New data suggests 1 in 44 US children affected by autism

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New government autism numbers suggest more U.S. children are being diagnosed with the developmental condition and at younger ages.

In an analysis of 2018 data released Thursday, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention researchers found that among 8-year-olds, 1 in 44 had been diagnosed with autism.

That compares with 1 in 54 kids identified with autism in 2016.

The CDC also says that children were 50% more likely to be diagnosed with autism by age 4 in 2018 than in 2014.

Experts believe that reflects more awareness and wider availability of special autism services.

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