Methods to Decrease Disparities in Age of Autism Diagnosis and Treatment Access among Latinx Children

Kristina Lopez, Jessica M. Marroquin, Courtney Gutierrez

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    11 Scopus citations


    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) affects a substantial number of individuals and their families. Early diagnosis followed by intensive behavioral services is critical to reducing social communication deficits and behavioral challenges. Research has continually demonstrated health disparities with Latinx families that perpetuate lower ASD prevalence rates, later ASD diagnosis, and limited access to treatment compared with white children. Moreover, Latinx children who are diagnosed with ASD receive less intense and fewer treatment services. Given the number of Latinx children and those with ASD, social workers are likely to encounter the intersection throughout their careers. Thus, it is critical for social workers to have general knowledge about autism and the complexity of accessing diagnostic and treatment services. In this article, the authors review the literature on Latinx children and ASD, and identify opportunities for social workers to be innovative in their use of frameworks, theories, and practice approaches to reduce disparities in ASD diagnosis and treatment among Latinx children.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)140-148
    Number of pages9
    JournalSocial Work (United States)
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - Apr 1 2020


    • LatCrit
    • Latinx children
    • autism
    • cultural humility
    • disparities

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Sociology and Political Science


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