One of SPHARC’s major projects is leading a Community of Learners for recipients of the Health Resources & Services Administration’s (HRSA) Innovation in Care Integration for Children and Youth with ASD/DD Program grants. This project supports the use of innovative, evidence-informed strategies of family navigation and provider training to achieve the goal of improving state system-level care integration for children and youth with ASD/DD and their families in medically-underserved areas and populations. SPHARC also facilitates other peer learning opportunities with others in the ASD/DD field, including former recipients of the aforementioned grant.
SPHARC understands the value and importance of peer learning and has expertise designing and providing peer learning to public health professionals working to improve systems of care for those with ASD/DD and their families. SPHARC designed the Autism Community of Learners around five different strategies to encourage collaborative learning and innovation (Figure A) and supports grantees in the community of learners to meet regularly to share strategies, successes, and challenges with their peers and brings in experts in the field and individuals with lived experience navigating ASD/DD systems.