New numbers from the federal Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 1 in 49 New Jersey children — or 1.8 percent — have some sort of autism spectrum disorder. That represents a 23 percent increase over the last study in 2009.
Boys have a higher diagnosed rate of autism than girls, with an estimated 1 in 54 boys having been identified as having a spectrum disorder. African Americans have a rate of 3.2 percent; Hispanics, 3.1 percent.
The CDC tracked autism rates in 14 states, New Jersey being one of them. Nationally, the rate is 1 in 88 children. Still, New Jersey did not show the highest prevalence of autism disorders among states studied. Both Pennsylvania and Utah had a 2.6 percent rate.