Young children, on average, are receiving early intervention services at a younger age than when they receive a formal autism diagnosis, indicating the nation may be doing a better job at providing early supports than diagnoses, according to an inaugural annual report by Autism Speaks, an advocacy organization.

In the U.S., the average age of intervention is 4.7 years, and the average age of diagnosis is 5 years old. However, according to the report there remains the need for improved screening tools to identify under-diagnosed. For example, girls are diagnosed at 5.6 years old on average.

A March report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found 1 in 36 children who were age 8 in 2020 to have autism spectrum disorder. That included 4% of boys and 1% of girls.

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