Archived News Entries

Citing a "misunderstanding," the West Virginia Board of Examiners of Psychologists has overturned its June ruling that ABA providers must be supervised by licensed psychologists. A lawsuit was filed on Friday alleging that the Board did not follow the law when enacting an "emergency rule" restricting the ability of Board Certified Behavior Analysts to offer services. In April, West Virginia passed a bill mandating private insureres cover ABA services until a child turns 18 years old.

A lawsuit was filed against the West Virginia Board of Examiners of Psychologists on Friday due to a state "emergency rule" enacted this summer that requires that Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) be directly supervised by licensed psychologists. This rule renders ABA services extremely difficult for families to access. In April, West Virginia passed a bill mandating insurance coverage for ABA services for children with autism until the age of 18. This state ruling, however, weakens the effectiveness of the insurance legislation dramatically. 

Aspiritech, an Illinois-based company that hires adults with autism, was the subject of a short AP video report this week. Aspiritech provides software testing services.

The article, "Autistic and Seeking a Place in Adulthood," which ran in The New York Times last Sunday has spurred numerous letters to the paper. Today writer Amy Harmon answers many of the questions in a follow-up piece.

The US House of Representatives approved the Combating Autism Reauthorization Act (HR 2005) late Tuesday afternoon. The bill reauthorizes federal spending for autism research and treatment.

The New York Times once again focused on adults on the autism spectrum this weekend, with a long feature article profiling Justin Canha, an artist with autism.  

Scientists from Columbia University and Harvard Medical School report that children with autism have altered expressions of genes involved in digestion. These variations may contribute to changes in the types of bacteria in their intestines. "The findings are consistent with other research suggesting that autism may be a system-wide disorder, and provide insight into why changes in diet or the use of antibiotics may help alleviate symptoms in some children," stated Mady Hornig, MD, Director of Translational Research at the Center for Infection and Immunity.

The Georgia Supreme Court reversed its prior decision and ruled that a family cannot pursue claims that a vaccine containing thimerosal caused their son's autism. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-2 in February that vaccine manufacturers were protected against liability claims based on defective-design allegations. The reversal by the Georgia court indicates to us that, based on Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, tort cases seeking relief against vaccine manufacturers by claiming defective vaccine design will be very difficult to win.

While a report from the the University of Michigan this week indicated that teachers in that state are not generally utilizing best practice in teaching students with autism, a British study released today suggests that teachers in the UK are missing the mark as well. The report found that schools need to "aim higher" in order to increase likelihood of postiive student outcome.

The Windsor Star reports on police efforts to create a registery for individuala with autism in the Canadian city. The registry will provide local police with contact information as well as strategies for approaching and helping ASD adults and children who are lost or need help.