Touro University Nevada receives a $3 million endowment from the State of Qatar to support the Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities

Known as the Qatar Patient Care Fund, the gift is timed with Autism Acceptance Month in April
Apr 2, 2021

Touro University Nevada (Touro), home to Nevada’s largest medical school and its only school of osteopathic medicine, in addition to the state’s largest physician assistant program, is the recipient of a $3 million endowment gift (gift) from the State of Qatar. The gift, known as the Qatar Patient Care Fund, will support and expand Touro’s Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities (Center) through 2027 and is being facilitated by the Embassy of the State of Qatar in Washington, D.C.

According to a 2019 autism prevalence survey, the prevalence of autism among school-aged children in Qatar is 1.14 percent – or 1 in 88 children – which is 1.4 percent higher than the worldwide average. The staggering statistic has driven government officials in Qatar to increase focus on programs and funding that address the epidemic both in Qatar and globally.

“The State of Qatar is proud to take a leading role in working with partners in the United States to ensure that individuals with autism spectrum disorder can lead full and meaningful lives” said His Excellency Meshal bin Hamad Al-Thani, Qatar’s Ambassador to the U.S. “With the establishment of this endowment, we aim to help more people on the spectrum access the healthcare resources they need. We look forward to supporting Touro University’s mission to innovate new therapies and better serve children and families in Southern Nevada.”

With this gift, finances will not be a barrier to receiving therapy services at Touro. In 2019, Touro had more than 5,800 patient appointments. The funds from this gift will be available for distribution starting in June 2022. As therapy services get back to post-pandemic levels, Touro will hire more therapists and increase the number of families served.

“We are grateful to the State of Qatar for this extremely generous and significant gift that will support and expand our Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities,” said Shelley Berkley, CEO and Senior Provost, Touro University Nevada. “We take great pride in the work we do at the Center and acknowledge the greatest reward is seeing first-hand the progress and improvement in our young clients after they work closely with our qualified therapists. This gift could not come at a better time as we continue to deal with the fall-out of COVID-19 that has created ripple effects for so many families across the valley, including families dealing with autism. This gift ensures our ability to continue to provide these critical services to children and families for years to come.”

Touro Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities opened in 2008 as a state-of-the-art facility designed with the special needs of children with developmental disabilities in mind. The facility offers evidence-based therapy services for children 18 months to 12 years.


Touro University Nevada (Touro) is Nevada’s largest school of medicine, the state’s only school of osteopathic medicine, fully accredited, and a private, non-profit, Jewish-sponsored institution. Opened in 2004, Touro was established to help address critical needs in health care and education and as a resource for community service throughout the state. Touro is now home to nearly 1,500 students, in a wide variety of degree programs including osteopathic medicine, physician assistant studies, education, nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and medical health sciences. The university’s Henderson campus includes a multi-specialty health center and a multi-disciplinary Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities. For more information on Touro, visit or call 702-777-8687.


The Embassy of the State of Qatar in Washington, D.C. houses Qatar's diplomatic mission to the United States. The primary purposes of the Embassy of Qatar are to highlight Qatar’s policies on regional issues, strengthen Qatar-U.S. bilateral relations, and to assist Qatari citizens who travel or live in the U.S. The current Ambassador of the State of Qatar to the United States of America is His Excellency Sheikh Meshal Bin Hamad Al-Thani.


Learn More About Touro's CADD