The US Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality Review Therapies for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: Behavioral Interventions Update has found a dramatic increase in the scientific evidence backing the effectiveness of intensive behavioral therapy for children affected by autism. The report some 519 pages in length has been reviewed on the Autism Speaks Science Digest site: “We are finding more solid evidence, based on higher quality studies, that these early intensive behavioral interventions can be effective for young children on the autism spectrum, especially related to their cognitive and language skills,” says lead author Amy Weitlauf, a clinical psychologist (Read more…)
Photo from Ameriquebec.net
In December 2007 I wrote Canada’s Autism Disgrace, describing the lack of a real National Autism Strategy in Canada. It is now 2014 and nothing has changed. Canada still lacks a real National Autism Strategy. The words I wrote in 2007, reprinted below, are as true and accurate today as they were then:
What is Canada’s National Autism Strategy? The answer is simple; we don’t have one. And as long as Stephen Harper’s Reform-Alliance-Conservative government rules Canada with an iron fist we will not have a National Autism Strategy. My friends of Conservative background (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Facing Autism in New Brunswick: Canada’s Autism Disgrace 2007: 2014 Update
News ReleaseFor Immediate Release December 10, 2013
CHILDREN WAITING TOO LONG FOR ACCESS TO AUTISM PROGRAMS, AUDITOR GENERAL SAYS (TORONTO) Screening for autism is often occurring late, and children who are diagnosed then face long waits for access to some of the programs that could help them, Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk says in her 2013 Annual Report. In addition, certain services are not being directed to those that may (Read more…)
Research to date benefiting persons suffering from autism disorders can be summed up in two words: Lovaas, ABA. The work done by Dr. Ivar Lovaas has been applied successfully for decades as reported by the US Surgeon General’s office (1999) and by the American Academy of Pediatrics (2007), reaffirmed (2010):
The effectiveness of ABA-based intervention in ASDs has been well documented through 5 decades of research by using single-subject methodology21,25,27,28 and in controlled studies of comprehensive early intensive behavioral intervention programs in university and community settings.29–40 Children who receive early intensive behavioral treatment have been shown to make (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Facing Autism in New Brunswick: Autism Research Progress To Date In Two Words: Lovaas, ABA
Yesterday was Canada Day and Conor sported his Team Canada shirt to celebrate. He also debunked not one but TWO autism myths. Conor has received ABA based intervention at school for 8 years. Yet, contrary to the myth that ABA causes discomfort and harm to persons with autism disorders, Conor shows his terrific smiles again ( see also side bar on this blog) debunking that nonsense yet again. He also debunks the myth that people with autism disorders do not like hugs and his Mom was very happy to assist in the demonstration!
. . . → Read More: Facing Autism in New Brunswick: Conor Debunks TWO Autism Myths Eh!
The Australasian Society for Autism Research has just released “A Review of the Research to Identify the Most Effective Models of Practice in Early Intervention for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders” which assesses the research evidence in support of the various early autism interventions and rates the interventions according to the level of evidence base in support of each intervention. As with every other major research review of the effectiveness of early autism interventions only ABA, applied behavior analysis, received the highest rating:
All credible reviews of autism interventions from the US Surgeon General to the American Academy . . . → Read More: Facing Autism Disorders in New Brunswick: ASfAR Early Autism Intervention Review: ABA Only Autism Intervention to Receive Highest Rating of E: Established Based on Evidence
At one time the argument might have been made that Canada led North America in terms of provision of evidence based treatment for autism. Strong parent advocacy had made gains in encouraging provincial governments in British Columbia, Alberta and New Brunswick to provide Applied Behavior Analysis treatment. Our federal government, however, refused to get involved in any meaningful way and the Harper government played politics with the National Autism Strategy. The pitiful National Autism Symposium was postponed to allow the deck to be stacked with anti-ABA advocates and to weed out ABA advocates including me. Here in New Brunswick our . . . → Read More: Facing Autism in New Brunswick: ABA Treatment for Autism: America Leads, Lets Catch Up Canada, Lets Get Moving Again!!
It is hard to believe that in 2012 a government agency with responsibilities for the provision or administration of health care could take the position that ABA is an “unproven” treatment for autism. That was the justification though of the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration in refusing to provide Medicaid coverage for ABA treatment for three persons with autism. As reported by the Miami Herald US Federal Judge Joan Lenard disagreed and ordered the FAHCA to provide the Medicaid coverage for the applied behavior analysis treatment: “U.S. Judge Joan Lenard ruled Friday that applied behavioral analysis . . . → Read More: Facing Autism in New Brunswick: US Federal Judge: ABA Proven and Highly Effective Treatment of Children with Autism