Archive | Letter to Governor From Bob Wright Urging ABA Coverage (PDF available ) | February 25, 2013 #StopBigAutism #BanABA

Not An Autistic Ally #BanABA

[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]


Letter by Bob Wright of Autism Speaks to Govenor
Bob Wright speaking about us without us.


February 25, 2013


Dear Governor,


Autism is a national epidemic that now affects 1 in every 88 children. This requires a broad-based response, including new opportunities to provide insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act. If your state has yet to offer that coverage, it is not too late to do so and I encourage you to take that step before your state’s new health insurance marketplace starts enrollment later this year.


Autism is the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States, yet our response lacks any consistency. Thirty-two states representing 75 percent of the nation’s population have taken steps to require the health plans they regulate to cover behavioral health treatment for autism, but 18 states have yet to enact that requirement. Major employers who self-fund their health insurance are regulated by the federal government which has issued no such requirement. Federal employees only this year were offered autism coverage, but it has proven spotty while our military families raising children with autism await meaningful coverage for personnel not on active duty.


The lifetime cost of caring for one individual with autism has been estimated at over $2 million – much of which is borne by the family with significant contributions from taxpayers. These costs can often be avoided by starting behavioral health treatment, such as applied behavior analysis, early in a child’s life. Many children with autism respond positively to this treatment and can be mainstreamed into our schools, reducing special education and other taxpayer-supported costs. But without insurance coverage, the cost of this treatment is beyond the reach of most families.


The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has shown a willingness to allow states to include behavioral health treatment as an habilitative service. In final regulations issued earlier this week, HHS determined “[i]f habilitative services are not covered by the EHB-benchmark plan, then states have the first opportunity to determine which habilitative benefits must be covered by their benchmark plan.”


I urge you to take that opportunity to include behavioral health treatment as a benefit to allow your state to address its autism crisis if you have not already done so. And please urge your Congressional delegation to support the changes we need in Washington to make autism a federal priority. If you or your staff has any questions, please contact our Government Relations team at advocacy@autismspeaks.org. We appreciate your consideration.


Sincerely,
Bob Wright Co-Founder


Map of the USA with each state in a various color. Color code below.

Green = States that require autism coverage in state-regulated and ACA health plans

Dark Green = States that require autism coverage in ACA plans only

Red = States that require autism coverage in state-regulated health plans or for state employees, but not ACA health plans

White = States that require no autism coverage

Based on an analysis by Autism Speaks of information posted on the website of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, the unit within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services which wrote the essential health benefit rules


More With Bob Wright


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Note/Warning:

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 workIn 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.


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