Health & Safety

July 26, 2013

Pilot program enhances Autism care, treatment

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A congressionally mandated pilot program set to launch July 25 will enhance an existing Defense Department program that provides care and treatment for military children with autism, a senior DOD official said.

Dr. Jonathan Woodson, assistant secretary of defense for health affairs and director of the TRICARE Management Activity met with reporters yesterday to explain the new program.

An estimated 8,500 children of active-duty military families have a form of autism, Woodson said. He sought to dispel military parents’ concerns about rumors of a potential loss in benefits for their children with autism and autism spectrum disorder.

“We understand that there’s a lot of anxiety in the community of interest around autism about suspected changes that would adversely affect care,” he said. “Providing care to children who have autism spectrum disorder and making sure they get the full range of care they need is a priority to us.”

“All care will be continued,” Woodson added, noting that active-duty service members’ children’s autism care benefits in the applied behavior analysis administered through TRICARE would not change.

“Anyone who’s receiving care under the (Enhanced Access to Autism Services Demonstration) – there will be no change,” he said.

There’s also no change in benefits to anyone enrolled in the basic medical program that began July 2012, Woodson said. An expansion of services through the autism pilot program, he added, will also allow retirees and their families to receive ASD benefits.

Autism care and treatment is evolving, Woodson said.

“In the future, we’ll try to identify what the best practice is for the periodic assessments – who should get it and over what period of time,” he said, noting the pilot program is expected to yield “great insight” into evaluation protocols.

The pilot program was developed by crafting requirements through consulting with experts in the field and advocacy groups to “try to find validated tests and the best strategy for focusing on what would be the right care at the right time for children (with autism),” Woodson said.

Woodson said the pilot program’s overall focus is directed at families, and what is best for their child. Parents’ input will be sought to ensure their issues are represented as the program is shaped, he added.

There is “an expanding need and recognition” of military families with children who have autism,” Woodson said. Integral to increasing autism treatment capability, he said, is having a large network of providers that work with autistic children.

“We continually try to improve … (and) expand our network of providers,” he said. “I think we have one of the most robust networks available.”

Woodson said it is “paramount” for children with autism to obtain professional reassessments to ensure they get the right care, at the right time, with updated care plans.

“That’s what we’re all about,” he said. “Focusing on the child and what’s best and providing the families with access to these services.”

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
doctor

Ask the Doc

Q. How do I login to Beneficiary Web Enrollment? A. You can login to Beneficiary Web Enrollment with a Common Access Card, or CAC; a Defense Financial and Accounting Service, or DFAS, login; myPay Login ID and Password; or Depa...
 
 

Trick-or-treat safely this Halloween

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — As we all know, it is that time of year again when children of all ages dress up to have an enjoyable Halloween. With security always in mind, the 99th Security Forces Squadron would like to pass on some tips for children and parents alike. When people come on the...
 
 
DT2

Rehabilitating minds, bodies, spirits

U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis Tech. Sgt. Jamie Garceau, 99th Medical Operations Squadron NCO in charge of physical therapy, works with an Airman while he works on a balance ball trainer during his physi...
 

 
doctor

Ask the Doc

Q. How do I know when to seek medical help for urgent health problems? A. Sometimes it’s hard to know when to seek medical help for urgent health problems. Having access to a trusted medical professional at a moment’s notic...
 
 

Safeguarding, re-evaluating your digital footprint

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Social media is a great resource for Airmen and their families to share information and stay connected to relatives at home and abroad. Although many depend on these wonderful tools, recent events have encouraged us to re-evaluate our digital footprint to ensure our personal and professional information is protected from online...
 
 
doctor

Ask the Doc

Q:“I just got married, how do I sign-up my spouse for TRICARE?” A: You will need to register your spouse in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, or DEERS, by completing a DD Form 1172, Application f...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin