In The Politics of Autism, I discuss Medicaid services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as other government programs at the federal and state levels.
A "large" number of South Carolina children suffering from autism are not getting access to medically necessary treatment they need because the state pays the lowest therapy rates in the nation, a lawyer representing advocates and organizations has told federal Medicaid officials.
In a letter to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid dated June 29, the advocates urge federal officials to direct the state Department of Health and Human Services to increase their reimbursement rates for applied behavior analysis treatments, what advocates believe offers the most hope for many who suffer from autism.
"Our most immediate concern is that a large number of South Carolina children are being deprived of access to prescribed, medically necessary ABA treatment because SCDHHS’ substandard reimbursement rate for these services — the lowest in the country, by far — has resulted in a lack of providers of this desperately needed care," Daniel Unumb wrote for the Autism Legal Resource Center and seven advocates and their organizations.
Unumb is the husband of Lorri Unumb, vice president of Autism Speaks and a new appointee for the state Department of Disabilities and Special Needs Commission. She also signed the letter.