An autism passport, in its most general form, is a card or form with specific information about an autistic individual. Its intended purpose is to quickly communicate important information about the behaviour of the autistic person or the accommodations that they need to a teacher, employer, general practitioner, nurse, etcetera.
Autism passports by country
The Dutch website Autisme paspoort offers an autism passport that is specifically designed for children. The child's parents/guardians fill out a long questionnaire about the child, ideally together with the child's teacher. From this, the website extracts a one-page information sheet that lists important information about the child, including:
- The extent of the child's sensitivity to different sensory inputs.
- Stims that are often used by the child.
- Behaviours of the child that indicate that they are suffering from sensory overload.
- Measures that can be taken to help reduce the child's sensory overload.
Another example are the flyers 'Gesprek bij de huisarts' and 'Gesprek bij een arts/specialist/zorgverlener' from the Female Autism Network of the Netherlands (FANN). These flyers are meant as a tool for autistic people to prepare themselves for a visit to their general practitioner's, or another medical specialist. The flyers consist of two parts. The first part lists questions that help the autistic person to verbalise what medical help they need, what questions they need to ask the specialist, and what the desired outcome of the consult is. The second part is a checklist, which the autistic person can use to quickly communicate to the medical professional what accommodations they need. For example, they can indicate that they:
- Have difficulty understanding metaphors.
- Are hypersensitive to (sudden) noises.
- Are hyposensitive to pain.
- Have difficulty describing the severity of their symptoms.
- Need the medical professional to ask them if all their questions are answered to their satisfaction.
They then send this part to the medical professional in advance, so that they can prepare themselves for the visit also.