Autism therapy options

The provincial government says families of children with autism will have more therapy options this year. They will be able to choose between government programs and direct funding for private therapy.

Parents have been advocating for a direct funding option for more than a decade and there will be no age cap.Under the old plan, kids younger than 5 were not eligible for private therapy funding.

Next month the $533 million autism program will roll out in the province, but now, after 12 years of advocating for change parents can decide what therapy is best.

The President of the Ontario Autism Coalition says they’re pleased with the announcement and that it gives families more choice and flexibility and at a fraction of the cost of regional programs.

The average cost per hour for regional service is $55, while the old direct funding model capped private therapy at $39. The Minister of children and youth services says they are working to increase that funding.

The announcement doesn’t change the type of therapies available in the province but it will put money in the hands of the parents so they can choose to purchase alternate private services if they see fit for their child.


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