[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]
US draws up plans to tackle autism
[WASHINGTON] The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is preparing a research plan for autism — and hopes to cut the condition’s prevalence in the United States by a quarter by 2013.
The NIH autism ‘roadmap‘, revealed on 19 November at a planning meeting of researchers and autism activists in Washington DC, will aim to identify the genetic, environmental and neurological factors behind the disorder. It represents the biomedical research agency’s first concerted push to tackle the condition, which afflicts up to 1 in 200 people in the United States.
Requested by the Congress last year, the roadmap was drawn up by the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee, a group of scientists, autism advocates and public-health experts. It may form the basis of future budget requests from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), which will lead its implementation.
By setting specific benchmarks for treating the disorder, the plan is something of a departure for the NIH, reflecting the results-oriented approach advocated by its director, Elias Zerhouni (see Nature 425, 438; 2003). The main scientific aspects of the roadmap include building a database of genes potentially linked to autism, and a series of clinical trials to determine the effectiveness of various early treatments for the condition. But the plan also sets what it calls a “high-risk” goal of reducing incidence of the disorder by 25% within ten years.
Researchers haven’t tackled these problems before, partly because so little is understood about the mechanisms behind autism. There is currently no biological diagnosis for the disorder. “We have no genes, no circuits, no workable animal models, so we don’t have the tools to develop new treatments,” says NIMH director Thomas Insel. “It’s a striking contrast to where we are with the rest of medicine. We are where we were eight years ago with Alzheimer’s disease or 20 years ago with Huntington’s.”
At this point, NIH officials don’t know how much money will be available to support the initiative. But some of the work will be done at eight autism research centres, established last year by the NIH, with a total budget of $65 million over five years.
The NIH and the National Alliance for Autism Research, an advocacy group based in Princeton, New Jersey, are already supporting a $4.5-million project to coordinate the search for autism-related genes. Now advocacy groups hope that the roadmap will form the basis of a larger, publicly supported investigation of the condition.
“It’s gratifying to see the government addressing it at such a high level and with such high priority,” says Lee Grossman, chairman of the Autism Society of America, an advocacy group based in Bethesda, Maryland. “It’s what we’ve been asking for for decades.”
Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid.
ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.
The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t work. In study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work.
What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.
The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth.
The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome.
This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.
Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.
Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.
Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.
[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]
Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.