People and families affected by autism face many challenges throughout their life.
Currently, the CDC reports that approximately 1 in 36 children in the U.S. is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Autism affects all ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Autism costs an estimated $60,000 a year throughout childhood, and parents often work fewer hours outside the home because of the increased needs of their loved one on the autism spectrum. These costs include ongoing fees for special education programs, therapies, medical care, assisted technology, and lost wages. As people with autism enter adulthood, the cost of caring for a loved one increases substantially. Over 50% of people with autism at the age of 25 have never held a paying job. Multiple studies have estimated that caring for a child with autism could add $1.4 – $2 million in additional expenses over that child’s lifetime.
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