§ Mr. Meacher
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is his estimate of the number of autistic children in the United Kingdom; in respect of how many applications have been made for an attendance allowance, and how many were, respectively, successful and unsuccessful.
§ Mr. Dean
The total number of autistic children in England and Wales of which my Department and the Department of Education and Science are aware is approximately 1,800. Figures for the United Kingdom are not available.
I regret that separate figures are not kept relating to claims for attendance allowance for autistic children as a specific group; the criteria for the award of attendance allowance do of course relate to the amount of attendance required, not to the nature of the disability.