Saturday, April 05, 2008
Clinic Notes: Autism Week is Almost Over and There's Not Much to Celebrate
Forty years ago I saw a case or two of autism every couple of years. Now seventy to eighty percent of the children that I see each week have a diagnosis of autism. I have a long waiting list and most of the kids on my waiting list will also end up with an autism diagnosis. We do mainstream fifty percent of the children with autism that we see on a regular schedule and that's certainly something to celebrate. But I worry about the other fifty percent and the children that I see and the other children in the rural area where I practice that I don't see because of funding or other issues. Every Psychologists, Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA), Speech Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, and Pediaric Numerologists I know tell the same story. Too many kids with autism and not enough providers. Parents of children with autism from all over the world email me at my website and complain about finding and paying for services. I feel like we are at war and our children are being taken from us in ever increasing numbers. And it is long past the time for mobilization. Hopefully, when autism week comes around next year there will be more to celebrate.