[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]
Bill Passed in Albany to Make Insurers Pay for Autism Care
By DANNY HAKIM
Published: June 22, 2010
ALBANY — State lawmakers passed legislation this week that would require insurers to cover autism-related screenings, diagnoses and treatments. The move was a relief for parents of children with autism spectrum disorders, but was sure to increase insurance premiums across the board.
The State Assembly passed the measure Monday night, a few weeks after it passed in the Senate. The measure passed unanimously in both houses.
It now goes to Gov. David A. Paterson. New York would become the 22nd state in which insurers are required to cover autism-related treatments.
“We’ll review it once it’s delivered,” said Morgan Hook, a spokesman for the governor.
In a statement, Sheldon Silver, the Assembly speaker and a Manhattan Democrat, said, “It would be unconscionable to force New Yorkers to pay out-of-pocket for this common, chronic condition.”
There have been a variety of estimates of the effect of the legislation on insurance premiums.
“The bill sponsors acknowledge it will raise premiums up to 2 percent,” said Paul F. Macielak, the chief executive of the New York Health Plan Association, an insurance industry group, in a statement earlier this month.
“Each additional coverage requirement, while they may seem well intentioned, also carries a cost,” he said.
His group has criticized lawmakers for proposing a flurry of mandated coverage this year for things like prenatal vitamins, infant baby formula and wheelchair purchases.
“Lawmakers can’t have it both ways,” Mr. Macielak said. “It’s hypocritical for them to criticize insurance premiums as being too high and then turn around and mandate a slew of new benefits that only drive up costs.”
Peter H. Bell, an executive vice president of Autism Speaks, an advocacy group, said, “Our estimate is that it was closer to a 0.5 percent premium increase, and our experience in other states is that the increase is lower than expected.”
Mr. Bell added that the bill was more sweeping than those passed in most other states.
“It has the potential to be the most comprehensive of its kind, because other states have a dollar cap and an age cap, which means that the treatments are only available up to a certain amount of money or for specific ages,” he said. “But the bill in New York does not have those limitations.”
Statistics from the American Academy of Pediatrics, which supports the legislation, found that the autism rate among children in New York has been increasing by about 15 percent annually, now affecting close to 1 in 90 children.
“This is the next step towards making certain that individuals with autism and their families are given the appropriate insurance coverage they deserve and have earned,” said Senator Roy J. McDonald, a Saratoga County Republican who has two autistic grandchildren. “But this is only the beginning, and the state needs to do more.”
A version of this article appeared in print on June 23, 2010, on page A22 of the New York edition.
The Autism Community Is Not The Autistic Community
More With Autism Votes
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.