News & Events
Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder Among Children Aged 8 Years:
Report of the New Jersey Autism Study, 2014
Since 2000, New Jersey has been part of the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC) Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM)
Network -- the only comprehensive US autism monitoring system. The ADDM
Network uses standard ASD definitions and rigorous, consistent, ascertainment
methods and procedures to monitor the expression and prevalence of ASD in
defined cohorts of children across US regions.
For 2014, using the comprehensive, population-based, active ascertainment
method, ASD prevalence in metropolitan New Jersey was estimated to be 29.3 per
1,000 (one in 34) children aged 8 years. ASD prevalence in New Jersey was
significantly higher than in each of the ADDM Network sites surveying a consistent
geographic region (p<0.01). Higher ASD rates in New Jersey are likely related to
more complete ASD ascertainment, and factors related to higher quality, more
detailed and elaborate information in education and health evaluations in New
Jersey. Factors related to socioeconomic status and urbanicity may also be
contributing to higher ASD prevalence in New Jersey.
Among the six ADDM Network sites completing 2012 and 2014 activities in the
same geographic region, all showed higher ASD prevalence for 2014, compared to
2012. Between 2012 and 2014, ASD prevalence increased significantly (19%)
across race and ethnicity, in New Jersey.
Between 2000 and 2014, while maintaining the same ASD definitions and case
finding procedures, autism prevalence increased from approximately 10 to 30
per 1,000 (200%) in New Jersey. The reasons for increasing ASD prevalence in
New Jersey and across the US are unknown, but may involve underlying change in
environmental risks or triggers and better awareness of ASD.
New Jersey boys are 3.7 times more likely have ASD than girls, similar to other
ADDM sites. Overall male ASD prevalence is 45.5 per 1,000 (CI: 42.4-48.9) or 4.5
percent. In New Jersey, in 2014, there was no significant difference in ASD
prevalence based on race/ethnicity. That is, white (30 per 1,000), black (27 per
1,000) and Hispanic (29 per 1,000) children are equally to have an ASD.
With ASD prevalence reaching 3% among children in New Jersey and with ASD
prevalence increasing 200% since 2000, ASD is an urgent public health concern
which requires a concerted scientific and public health effort to 1) enhance early
detection of ASD, 2) identify environmental risk factors or ASD triggers and 3)
develop greater resources to meet the growing needs of children, adolescents and
adults with autism.
NJ ADDM Snapshot 04 30 2018
ADDM ASD Prevalence MMWR 04 27 2018
ADDM 2018 Community Report 04 30 2018