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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

CR191. Good practice in the management of autism (including Asperger syndrome) in adults

Price: £0.00

Approved: May 2014

Published: Sep 2014

Status: current

Number of pages: 38

Review by: 2018

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This report is only available online – there are no printed copies available to buy.

Please use the link above to view and download a PDF file of the report.

This guidance is focused on standards of care for adults who do not have a general intellectual disability, people identified by terms such as ‘high-functioning autism’ and ‘Asperger syndrome’. It is their needs and difficulties that this report addresses and it is written primarily for psychiatrists other than those in the specialties of intellectual disability and child and adolescent psychiatry.


The presentation of someone with autism and the resources they require will be influenced by the setting in which they find themselves as well as by the presence of any comorbid disorder. While it may be the latter that leads to the referral to psychiatry, its management will be influenced by the presence of autism.


A number of substantial changes have been introduced with DSM-5 and these are discussed in the report.


Please note, this report replaces CR136. Psychiatric services for adolescents and adults with Asperger syndrome and other autistic-spectrum disorders (from year 2006).



  • Working group
  • Executive summary
  • Purpose of this report
  • Epidemiology
  • Policy
  • Recognition, diagnosis and assessment
  • Management
  • Legal aspects of psychiatry
  • Services
  • Appendix: Instruments for identifying autism
  • References
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See also:

Autism: The NICE Guideline on Recognition, Referral, Diagnosis and Management of Adults on the Autism Spectrum