A new registry launching this month in New Jersey will improve tracking of children with special needs and connect families to resources in their area.

The electronic Autism Registry requires doctors to register children they diagnose with autism, Down’s syndrome and other developmental conditions. Doing so will allow families to be referred to services in their area. Information in the confidential registry will also be used to help state officials better assess the prevalence of various conditions and more appropriately allocate resources.

“Through this registry, families will be referred to appropriate resources in their own communities so they can get the best treatment and care for their children’s special needs,” Governor Jon Corzine said in announcing the registry Thursday.

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