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Is Michigan Autism Plan a Step in the Right Direction, West Bloomfield?

A proposal that calls for more early screening, better training for primary care providers, a state information clearinghouse and more was released Monday. Leave a comment to share your reaction!

The state of Michigan on Monday unveiled a plan to address the needs of residents with autism.

The Michigan Department of Community Health released the Michigan Autism Spectrum Disorders State Plan, which calls for more early screening, better training for primary care providers, a state information clearinghouse and more, according to Michigan Radio.

"Today marks another significant day for Michigan and our efforts to help families and individuals with autism," Lt. Gov. Brian Calley said. "It was an honor to sign the autism insurance legislation last year and I'm glad to see that our efforts have not stopped there. We have a great opportunity in front of us with this plan. I'm eager to see the progress Michigan will continue to make."

Calley, who has a daughter with autism, signed a bill in 2012 that mandates insurance companies provide autism treatment coverage for children, according to The Detroit News.

The Michigan Department of Community Health has not laid out a time line for when the plan will be implemented, the newspaper reported.

The plan will address the needs of 16,000 students with ASD in Michigan public schools and 50,000 individuals living with ASD throughout the state, a State of Michigan press release said.

Autism Spectrum Disorders – which include autism, Asperger syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder and Rett syndrome – are neurological impairments that cause social, communication and behavioral challenges, the Michigan Autism Program says. One in 88 children in the United States falls on the spectrum, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To learn more about the plan, visit michigan.gov/autism.

For more on autism

  • Activitist Temple Grandin: Austism Does Not Define Me
  • 5 Questions: Birdhouse's Ben Chutz

What do you think of the plan, West Bloomfield? Is it a step in the right direction?

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