Financial Assistance for Autism Therapy
Many families struggle to find financial assistance for autism therapy. Although insurance typically covers the bulk, treatment is expensive and many often face paying their entire max out of pocket.
The severity of the condition, private schooling, additional caregiving, and more can make that figure higher. Depending on the plan, this can be as high as $15,000 or more just for the services for their child.
Finding resources to ease the financial burden of care can be time-consuming and confusing, and those caring for autistic children already have a lot on their plate.
So to help, here is a list of resources where parents can find financial assistance for autism therapy.
Financial Assistance for Autism Therapy through Government Programs
Medicare and Medicaid
The Department of Health and Human Services has several programs to assist those in raising a child with autism. In addition to these programs, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) offer several services for those with ASD.
Those enrolled in Medicaid, Medicare, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program may be eligible for several benefits that can ease the financial aspect of care.
Medicaid provides state-based programs for children and adults with ASD or related conditions with reduced income and resources. Care and services can differ depending on the state you live as well as your child’s age.
Medicaid also offers aid for community living through both home and community-based services, as well as physical health services.
For a full list of resources, visit the Medicaid Section 1115 Demonstrations page.
Additionally, each state has a public early childhood system for early intervention. Parents can request a free assessment (also called a Child Find evaluation) to see if their child meets the criteria for intervention services, and parents do not need a referral or diagnosis before calling.
For children three years old or younger:
- Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA): 919-962-2001
- Or visit the ECTA website
Or, for those three and older, parents can contact their local public school system, or refer to the phone number and website above for further assistance.
Supplemental Security Income for Special Needs
SSI is a form of social security benefit and the single source of federal income reserved for children with disabilities.
Low-income families may find the costs of autism treatment impossible. However, SSI makes it possible for children with autism and their families to receive help.
Not every child or family qualifies for SSI, and the program does impose restrictions based on income. But, the average child on SSI receives about $650 each month, with a maximum payment of $771.
Additionally, those who qualify for SSI are automatically eligible for Medicare in many states as well.
Another way parents can find financial assistance for autism therapy is by using tax breaks and credits.
The next time you file your federal income taxes, deduct any unreimbursed medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income.
This deduction goes further than medications and medical bills because it also applies to medically required foods, mileage for appointments, and supplies for therapy as well.
Similarly, you can apply the child and dependent care credit if you hired a caregiver for your child while working or looking for work. This credit can go toward child-care, after-school programs, camps, and more.
Lastly, the 529A account is a state-sponsored account which offers financial assistance to disabled individuals that won’t affect their eligibility for other government programs.
Debt.org has many other resources for financial assistance for those wiAutism awareness brought this condition to the attention of many people and also helped new and existing organizations dedicated to supporting those with ASD and their families.