Finding the right doctor or medical services for children can be hard. Finding those same services for children with autism can be even more difficult.
“In the autism world there can be long waits for services, there tend to be limited resources and difficulty accessing services that are needed,” says Tracy Gale, director of autism and behavior services at Easterseals Crossroads, the largest disability services organization in Indianapolis. “It can be very overwhelming for families.”
A new partnership hopes to change that. Health insurance giant Anthem is partnering with Easterseals Crossroads to launch a new program to support children with autism and their families.
“What we’re really trying to do is help families really navigate all of the really confusing school and treatment and therapy and medical services,” Gale says.
The partnership begins with a two-year pilot in Marion County and anticipates about 50 members. It’s the first such partnership for children with autism in Indiana.
As we’ve reported, services for children with autism can come in a variety of manners, depending on the severity of the diagnosis. From occupational therapy to improv theater classes, a wide of range of services can help children across the autism spectrum.
When children reach college, new supports may need to come into play as others fall away.
Under the new partnership, Anthem members will work directly with a care coordinator. They will develop a plan based on needs, assist with access to medication or other treatment services, and connect families to community resources.