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What is AccessOAP?

Please note there are hyperlinks in this article


If you are registered in the OAP (Ontario Autism Program), you may have received or will be receiving an email or letter about setting up an AccessOAP account.


Here's a short video from the Ministry



(1) What is AccessOAP?

What is AccessOAP? A website and family portal designed to make accessing and coordinating autism services easier. Families currently registered with the OAP (Ontario Autism Program) should keep an eye out for an email or mail invitation with a transition code so that they can create their AccessOAP account. Once families set up an AccessOAP account, they will be able to interact with AccessOAP to learn about the services and supports available to them and their children.

In short, AccessOAP will be handling the administration of the OAP. In the past, the provincial autism program was managed by the regional providers and then by the Ministry. The transition code enables the Ministry to transfer your child's file to AccessOAP.


(2) How was AccessOAP created and what do they do?

In 2020, a call for applications to become  the Independent Intake Organization (IIO) -  which would handle key components of the OAP  (Ontario Autism Program) - was put out.  Responsibilities of the IIO include:  intake and registration into the OAP, overseeing the waitlist for Core Clinical Services, issuing funding to families and reconciling expenses, coordinating families’ access to  different services and supports, hiring and training Care Coordinators.  On December 2021, it was announced that the IIO  had been chosen. It was named officially as AccessOAP  and consists of Accerta Services Inc., McMaster University,  Autism Ontario, and HealthCare 365 . It was also announced then that AccessOAP  would begin supporting families in spring 2022.

Please note that transition codes are only being to families who are already registered in the OAP (previously done through either the regional provider or directly with the Ministry)


(3) After I've created my AccessOAP account, what happens next?


After you've set up your account, be on the lookout for a message to eventually come in the AccessOAP portal about scheduling a Welcome Call (which can also virtual). This is where your Care Coordinator will explain what AccessOAP is and next steps.

Since April, families have been receiving emails  from AccessOAP that contain a transition  code and information to create an  AccessOAP account within 30 days.  If you have received such an email,  please go to the AccessOAP website to  create your account as soon as possible.   Eventually, you will be sent a PM in the  AccessOAP portal regarding a Welcome Call with a Care Coordinator to discuss next  steps. Your Care Coordinator is your  "go-to person" re the OAP.  Please don't hesitate to reach out  if you have any questions

(4) How do I register for the OAP?


As of October 2022, newly diagnosed families can register for the OAP through the AccessOAP website or via PDF


(5) When will I get an invitation to Core Clinical Services?


Invitations to Core Clinical Services are being sent to families in order by registration date. Once you get an invitation, you can schedule the Determination of Needs (DON) which is where a Care Coordinator (different from the one assigned to you) will ask you questions about your child’s goals, strengths and support needs across ten domains. This information will be used to determine your funding allocation.


(6) How do I prepare for the DON?


The questions that will be asked are about your child's needs over ten domains. Review them prior to your meeting and make notes (i.e. have examples) for each section. Be prepared to explain whether your child requires full support, some support or is independent in these areas.


Consider asking those who work with your child (e.g. teacher, SERT, occupational therapist, physical therapist, speech language pathologist, behaviour therapist, etc.) for their feedback about your child's needs. You may invite a therapist to attend the DON as well.

communication — how individuals communicate and understand others to meaningfully participate in activities of daily life / social interaction — how individuals participate in social situations, shared activities and interactions with others (groups, peers, new settings) / play and leisure — how individuals engage in play and recreation, independently and with others / activities of daily living — how individuals complete daily tasks, such as getting dressed and eating / motor skills — how individuals participate in activities that involve using fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and coordinating their movements such as writing and walking / cognitive skills — how individuals follow instructions, concentrate and solve problems / sensory system — how individuals manage reactions to stimuli / interfering behaviours — how individuals manage behaviours that may impact their ability to participate safely in activities of daily life / mental health — how individuals manage needs that impact their daily functioning and capacity to meaningfully participate and enjoy daily life / adaptability and resilience – how individuals manage needs related to being flexible and resilient in daily life

If you're unsure about any of the domains, ask your Care Coordinator for details prior to the DON and clarify what they’re asking


The DON is booked for 4 hours but you can ask that it be broken up. Breaks are provided but you can ask to take a breather when needed.


Remember that the DON isn't the same as a clinical assessment. You are providing information about your child's needs to determine funding allocation.



Do you have questions about the OAP? Ask us! If you're struggling to navigate autism services in Ontario, reach out and we can help guide you!

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