Monday, October 19, 2009

Editorial Comment

In our local paper this past Saturday, Doug Flutie wrote an editorial regarding the lack of health care coverage for services that autistic children need (Boston Globe, 10/17/2009). Doug Flutie’s son, Doug Junior, is autistic; and the former star quarterback has been a staunch advocate and fundraiser for autism research. He pointed out that, while it has been well-documented that one-on-one speech, occupational and physical therapy are some of the services that improve the lives of children with autism spectrum disorders, the only subsidized services that they receive are through their schools. Most Health Care insurance plans will not cover additional services outside of school.

My family is fortunate. My son’s learning disability does not leave him deep in the autism tunnel. The services he received through our school system were excellent. The services outside of school had mixed results. He has a psychologist who has been helping my son deal with his learning and social issues with phenomenal results. But – as I have written before – the group social skills classes were less successful.

In the forefront today is the teacher who worked at our elementary school’s extended day program who taught my son how to play Ultimate Frisbee, which continues to be his most solid connection to college peers so far.

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