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Monday, September 4, 2023

Pushback Against Cuts in Indiana

The Politics of Autism includes an extensive discussion of insurance and Medicaid services.

Whitney Downard at Indiana Capital Chronicle:
A bipartisan group of lawmakers from both chambers sent a letter to Gov. Eric Holcomb earlier this week urging him to reconsider the proposed rate cuts for Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) therapy, a specialized form of treatment for autistic children.

The letter, authored by Shelbyville Republican Rep. Robb Greene, was signed by 13 senators and 29 representatives from across the state. Greene, a freshman legislator, shared the impact of ABA therapy on his young son. Rep. Robb Greene, R-Shelbyville (Photo from the House Republicans)

“When my son, RG, was diagnosed with (Autism Spectrum Disorder) at age 3, he was functionally non-verbal. At an age when many parents are experiencing the joy that accompanies each milestone, we were told that our son had the developmental parity of a nine-month-old,” Greene wrote in a statement.

“… Within 2 months (of ABA therapy), RG went from very few vocalizations to the start of meaningful exchanges with us, his peers and his therapy team. Within the first year, he acquired many necessary life skills, such as beginning and mastering potty training, efforts made toward dressing himself and learning coping mechanisms that enabled our family to socialize together in more public settings,” Greene continued.

Greene said RG’s current ability to communicate basic needs and advocate for himself wouldn’t have occurred without “intensive” ABA therapy. His son now attends kindergarten at the family’s local public school.

“Simply put, ABA saved my son’s life,” Greene said.