Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Autism Study

Parents of children with autism are terrified about what would happen to their kids if they weren't around. Will they be able to hold a job as adults? A new survey of around 1600 parents of children with autism shows which topics parents are most concerned about.

The Easter Seals "Living with Autism Study" will be used to prioritize the needs of our local families. Teaching kids with autism basic life skills like how to answer a phone or how to respond appropriately to basic questions is key.

Parents want their kids to be financially and socially independent. The President of the Peoria Chapter of the Autism Society of America said, "The thought of us not being there to take care of them and know what's best for them, terrifies us. And that's why it is so important for us to get the services for our children that we need to teach them the skills they need to survive."

Just last week, Governor Rod Blagojevich signed the Autism Insurance Bill into law. Families are grateful, but say it's not enough.

You can find more information about this study by going to CI.EasterSeals.com:

These are just a sampling of the powerful sentiments parents of children with autism shared with Easter Seals through its new nationwide Living with Autism Study. As one of the nation’s largest providers of autism treatment and services, the one consistent message Easter Seals hears from families – after the initial anxiety of learning their child has autism – is an overwhelming concern about the life-long supports their child with autism will need.

For example, when it comes to parents of children with autism:

-Nearly 80% are extremely or very concerned about their child’s independence as an adult, compared to only 32% of parents of typically-developing children.
-They’re worried their child won’t fit into society, with few feeling their child will:
Make his own life decisions (14% vs. 65% of parents of typically-developing children)
Have friends (17% vs. 57%)
Have a spouse/life partner (9% vs. 51%)
Participate in recreational activities (20% vs. 50%)
-They report they’re “financially drowning,” with concerns for their child’s financial future seeming to far surpass the worries of parents with typically-developing children.
-74% fear their child will not have enough financial support after they die, while only 18% of parents with typically-developing children share this same fear.

Easter Seals will use the findings to shed new light on the ongoing challenges facing people living with autism, raising awareness of and advocating for the life-long services millions of families living with autism desperately need. We hope you find this intimate information from families living with autism helpful as you craft current and future autism-related stories. Easter Seals has an array of autism experts available to speak to you, as well as an eager group of families willing to share their personal experiences as they navigate their day-to-day lives – with autism.
-NewsAnchorMom Jen

Methodist Medical Center's new online healthcare program, MyMethodist eHealth, is a proud sponsor of this blog post. MyMethodist eHealth is the secure link to your doctor's office that lets you request appointments, order prescription refills, update your personal health record, and more. Sign up for MyMethodist eHealth here.


Coach Dave said...

Autism is one of those disabilities where you just don't know if everything you are doing will help your child. As a parent I am glad that we can share our concerns and work with other organizations to help our children and young adults that are living with Autism contribute and succeed.

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