Saturday, March 23, 2013
1/50 Diagnosed with Autism
New numbers were announced earlier this week. Autism diagnosis rates have climbed to 1/50. This leads to many questions and quite a few emotional responses. However, it is important to consider where these numbers came from. I brought up the topic during my Thursday podcast to my guest, Colleen Allen, who is the CEO of Autism Alliance of Michigan. Allen stated that she is "not too sure," about the new numbers, at least until she can see how the information was derived. According to Allen, statistics about autism have been collected before through phone surveys with parents and diagnosis are not necessarily confirmed. It does not mean that autism hasn't risen, but I think it is important not to get caught up in the sensationalism associated with these new numbers. Some people's jobs depend on how many people they can get to listen to them and fear is a good motivator. Hence the sensationalism. Let's try to look at this objectively with a clear head before we decide what to do about it.