A recent analysis from Autism Speaks and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health highlights the cost of the growing adult population that is living with autism.
The report specifically targets the expenses from the California Department of Developmental Services. The department’s costs exceeded $26,500 for each adult each year. This study took place during the 2012-2013 fiscal year.
The purpose of the study is to show that there needs to be better public service planning to address this cost issue. This is especially important in light of the incessant increase of children with autism, who will reach adulthood soon.
“We know that all of society benefits when we provide the supports that enable people with autism to reach their highest potential as valued members of our communities,” Michael Rosanoff, Autism Speaks' director for public health research, said. “That’s why Autism Speaks continues to fund research that can inform and alert public health agencies, legislators, autism advocates and other community and national leaders to the need for adequate funding for such programs.”
Study results show that the costs favor adults with autism, including those with intellectual disability -- which reflects approximately one third of the people on the autism spectrum.
The study also unveils drastic differences among different racial groups and the services that were provided them.
“These findings reinforce the need for public policies that prioritize timely access to supports and services for people with autism,” Lorri Unumb, Autism Speaks’ vice president for state government affairs, said. “The findings also highlight the need for high-quality interventions in childhood, which can substantially reduce the need for costly services and supports in adulthood.”