Autism now affects 1 in 68 U.S. children

numbers increased
By Lisa Ackerman

This is the third year in a row the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has announced new autism rates right before April (1), a month that has been designated as autism awareness month. For years, TACA likes awareness but appreciates ACTION hence why we call this effort #AutismActionApril.

As I have mentioned in previous announcements, if you weren’t worried about autism before, you need to be worried now. Autism now strikes in 1 in 68 children. Back in 1970 this rate was 1 in 10,000.

We have heard the comparisons before: if 1 in 68 children (1 in 42 boys, 1 in 189 girls) were being kidnapped there would be riots in the streets (thanks Johnathon Shestack for this reference and your work.) Why no response with the alarming increase of autism?

We treasure our children. We do not treasure autism and what it does. Individuals with autism face enormous challenges, some requiring care for life. Alarm bells are ringing, but who is listening?
The annual cost of autism is $137 billion a year (3.) This is a 2012 number that is also in need of an update. Even with those outdated costs, what can’t be measured is the hardship endured by families and individuals living with autism. Those costs are much higher.

I have often compared autism to other epidemics. There is a scene in a movie called “AND THE BAND PLAYED ON” with Matthew Modine that really captures my feelings as a parent. (I get chills every time I watch it.) This scene needs to play out in real life for autism. WHAT DOES THE NUMBER NEED TO BE FOR AUTISM TO COUNT? For action to take place? If you missed it or need a reminder, please check it out:

 

 

Autism can also be deadly. Ask the 44 families who have lost a child to autism and wandering deaths since 2011 or to countless other medical issues such as seizures.

We need to rally the community to increase the public’s awareness and support about autism. I dream about achieving the same level of support that other conditions have been able to achieve. We need not only awareness, but action. Ultimately, we need to be smarter about addressing the needs of an epidemic before the costs are more than this society can bear. Let’s not forget about the future of our children. What happens when parents are no longer to here to care for them?

We know what is needed for families. We had hoped that since the inception of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) in 2006, there would be positive change (4.) More than 7 years later, autism rates have increased, services and support have decreased, and we are nowhere further along with answers and support for 1 in 68 children and their families. In my opinion the IACC has failed to provide any solutions for families.

We need to do more. #AutismActionApril is almost here, so let’s take action to make a difference! (5.) Will you help? The 1 in 68 are counting on you.

sad kid

References:
1) Autism Rate Announcements: https://www.tacanow.org/category/news/

The Autism Epidemic continues to rage on…

and https://www.tacanow.org/news/1-in-88-or-1-in-50-which-autism-rate-will-prevail/

2) Dr. Bob Sears blogs:
https://tacanowblog.com/2013/01/02/top-2012-tacanow-blogs/ and https://tacanowblog.com/2013/03/20/so-autism-is-now-even-more-common-anybody-care-yet/ and https://tacanowblog.com/2014/01/27/so-autism-is-even-more-common-than-last-year-who-cares/

3) Autism costs https://tacanowblog.com/2012/05/31/the-annual-cost-of-autism/

4) IACC https://tacanowblog.com/2012/10/26/what-the-iacc-must-consider/

5) Ways to activate this April http://www.tacanow.org/ways-to-help/autism-awareness/

TACA-Autism-Stats-2014

 

 

21 Comments Add yours

  1. Kathy Seravalli says:

    I thought it was 1 in 50 as of last year?? Kathy

    Sent from my iPad

  2. Cel Ree says:

    Thank you for speaking out. I am nauseated and furious at the lack of attention and outrage. Autism has devastated our family.. It is grief we will never recover from. We love our son, but this didn’t have to happen.

    1. Lisa says:

      Did your son take children’s Tylenol after a fever from immunizations???

    2. threenorns3 says:

      you don’t know that. my belief is that autism has a genetic component (which is why it hits some families so hard and other families never even hear of it) that is triggered by any one of a number of things, including vaccination, diet, exposure to chemicals, viral illness, extreme high fever, etc.

      i don’t waste time grieving over a child i probably never would’ve had in the first place – i’m concentrating on the child i have.

      1. David says:

        I don’t believe in genetic epidemics.

  3. crystalunplugged says:

    Reblogged this on Crystal Unplugged: and commented:
    Are you freaking kidding me???!!!! This just tears me up! What is going on? Having a child on the spectrum who I KNOW is going to be just fine in the end because he is so high-functioning, I know how blessed we are. This just feels like a punch in the gut. What is happening to our children? We need answers.

    1. Lisa says:

      They will never admit it.. Don’t you get it?? Imagine the law suits!!

  4. Joan Matthews says:

    Lisa, did you post somewhere that 1 in 6 kids now has a neurological disorder, according to the CDC? If so, where can I find their original announcement? In 2003, I went to a lecture given by Dr. Mark Geier, who predicted that someday 1 in 6 kids would have a neurological disorder. Yikes! And he lost his medical for daring to help autistic boys in a daring way.

  5. Lisa says:

    With all of the coverage needed for Obama care and ILLEGAL people here being covered not having a drivers license etc….. It’s no wonder this is not covered under insurance. (Sarcastically said)

  6. threenorns3 says:

    speaking as the probably-autistic parent of one probably-autistic child (it’s either autism or else it’s tourette’s+anorexia syndrome+OCD+ADHD+a sleep disorder+a “personality disorder of a non-specific nature”) and one confirmed autistic child, maybe if people would focus more on nurturing and encouraging the gifts that come with autism instead of focussing on the issues half the time and trying to homogenize autistic children into the neuro-typical population the other half of the time, we’d actually get somewhere with this.

    1. Guest says:

      This isn’t about homogenizing children with autism into a neurotypical population. It’s about preparing children to live full lives as adults, and hopefully giving them the tools they need to be independent members of our society. For children for whom autism is a gift, let them keep that gift – I assure you that for the majority autism is not a gift, and for parents of those children there is an obligation to try and do everything possible to help these children become functional members of society.

      Hopefully we can agree that for children that are incapable of caring for themselves in the foreseeable future, autism is not a gift.

  7. kellyinbigd says:

    I want somebody to do a post – or even better, a graphic – with the years next to the prevalence rates, then the percentage of ASD kids who won’t be able to live independently and will need gov’t to pay to take care of them for their whole lives, and then the average cost per year to take care of these kids. I want to see a “lifetime cost” per adult child w/ ASD, then multiply it by the NUMBER of these kids. I think it would be powerful for people to see the CRAZY financial burden this is going to be on the economy.
    If our pleas for understanding and compassion don’t work, surely money talks????

  8. kellyvalenta says:

    I want somebody to do a post – or even better, a graphic – with the years next to the prevalence rates, then the percentage of ASD kids who won’t be able to live independently and will need gov’t to pay to take care of them for their whole lives, and then the average cost per year to take care of these kids.

    I want to see a “lifetime cost” per adult child w/ ASD, then multiply it by the NUMBER of these kids. I think it would be powerful for people to see the CRAZY financial burden this is going to be on the economy.

    If our pleas for understanding and compassion don’t work, surely money talks????

  9. Sheba SAMs says:

    My grandson who was left with me and I am the only family left and is now in what they call a staffed residence because he is now too big for me to take care of ,I have tried everything hoping he would have a better life.Every day I hope he will get better and services will improve. No one cares but me and what will happen to him when I gone? Who will be watching to see if he gets the care he needs? From a grandma that loves her grandson who is wonderful .

    1. David says:

      Sheba, you and your grandson are in my prayers.

  10. Alex McTyre says:

    Whoever said that Autism isn’t something you shouldn’t treasure at all needs to get a wake up call from autistics like me. Autism isn’t that devastating or heartbreaking at all! Your whole ignorant perception of how autism is a disease that is killing people is! Autistics need to learn how to be autistic rather than conform to become neurotypicals.

    1. threenorns3 says:

      that’s kind of what i think: why should i and my daughter have to do things that we think are stupid, uncomfortable, or even outright painful because “that’s not how it’s done”?

      my 7yr old doesn’t want to read about some brother and sister squirrel going shopping and missing the bus. squirrels don’t shop and cats don’t drive buses.

      why is it so impossible for the teacher to take whatever the heck the stupid lesson is about budget-conscious rodents and apply it to The Care and Keeping of Goldfish, which is what she wanted to read instead?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s