I really want to know.
No member of the media will ever bring this up.
So why don’t we ask people running for elected office about the always expanding rate of autism?
Shouldn’t every candidate be concerned about something impacting so many children and their families, especially those running for the office of President of the United States?
Here’s what’s been happening to autism over the last 20 years.
(FYI, Asperger Syndrome, or mild autism, was added in 1994, so “widening the definition” hardly applies.)
In 2002 the rate was one in every 250 children.
In 2004 it was one in 166 children, one in 102 boys.
In 2007 it was one in 150 children, one in 92 boys.
In 2009 it was one in 110 children, one in 68 boys.
In 2012 it was one in 88 children, one in 54 boys.
In 2014 it was one in 68 children, one in 42 boys.
In 2018 it was one in 59 children, one in 36 boys.
In 2020 it was one in 54 children, one in 33 boys.
In 2021 it was one in 44 children, one in 27 boys.
In 2023 it is one in 36 children, one in 22 boys.
Reports from other places are truly shocking.
Throughout all these increases, no federal health official has ever referred to autism as a CRISIS. ‘Serious public health concern’ is the strongest language I seen when it comes to autism.
No federal health official has ever raised an alarm about autism and demanded that we focus on the environmental triggers behind these continuous increases. If 30 percent of children with autism were progressing normally as babies and then lost learned skills, regressing into autism, shouldn’t we be studying what happened to them?
Here’s a sampling of how little U.S. health officials really care about children disabled with autism.
The updates in the autism rate over 20 years always came with a disclaimer from experts and health officials telling us that the number didn’t mean more kids had autism. We are also to assume that Americans across the population are affected at the same rate as the eight-year-olds in the CDC’s studies, even though no research has been able to find a comparable rate among adults.
Autism disorders are "more common than previously believed," affecting about one in 150 8-year-olds in the 14 states studied, says the CDC.
That's higher than previous CDC estimates of up to one in 166 children….
CDC officials pointed out that the new figures don't represent all U.S. children, or show whether autism is increasing in the U.S.
But the CDC's study was designed to provide "more consistent and reliable estimates," says the CDC's Marshalynn Yeargin-Allsopp, MD.
"Our estimates are becoming better and more consistent, though we can't yet tell if there is a true increase in ASDs or if the changes are the result of our better studies," says CDC director Julie Gerberding, MD, MPH, in a CDC news release.
Until recently, the CDC had been saying autism occurred in 1 in 150 children. The new CDC estimate looks at 8-year-old children who had been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder in 2006….
The increase may be due in part to better diagnosis and changes in how well records were kept in the study sites, said Catherine Rice, a CDC behavioral scientist who worked on the new report.
“At this point it’s impossible to say how much is a true increase and how much is identification,” she said, in a Friday news conference.
Doctors do not know what causes autism, but have been investigating possible genetic and environmental triggers. Results from the environmental research are still years away, Rice said.
At the new 2008 prevalence rate of one in 88 American children, autism costs the U.S. $137 billion a year. It has been estimated that 45% of Americans with autism have an intellectual disability. The lifetime cost for each person who has an intellectual disability related to autism is $2.3 million, Knapp and Mandell estimate.
Why Is Autism on the Rise?
Why the huge increase in autism? That isn't clear. A number of factors likely contribute to the increase, says Coleen A. Boyle, PhD, director of the CDC National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities.
"We know that some of it is due to how children with autism are identified and served in their local communities," Boyle tells WebMD. "We do feel doctors are getting better at diagnosing autism. … But we don't know how much is due to better identification and diagnosis, how much is due to availability of services, and how much is a true rise in prevalence."
As many as one in 68 U.S. children have autism, a 30 percent increase in just two years, U.S. health officials said on Thursday, but experts think the rise may simply reflect that parents and doctors are getting better at recognizing and diagnosing the disorder.
Experts were largely unfazed by the latest numbers, which they say do not necessarily suggest increasing prevalence.
“It’s not that surprising because as people get more aware, the prevalence has always increased in a psychiatric disorder,” Dr Thomas Frazier, director of Cleveland Clinic Children’s Center for Autism, said in a telephone interview….
Coleen Boyle, director of the CDC’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, said while the report does not explain why rates are rising, it does give some clues….
“It could be doctors are getting better at identifying these children; it could be there is a growing number of children with autism at higher intellectual ability, or it may be a combination of better recognition and increased prevalence,” Boyle said.
About 1 in 59 children in the United States live with autism spectrum disorder, according to a report published today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that tracks autism in 11 communities across the country. That's a higher number than the previous estimate, released in 2016, which found 1 in 68 children in the U.S. have autism….
Experts can't yet tell from the report whether autism is actually on the rise or whether the new numbers are due to improvements in recognizing and diagnosing the condition.
"It's a significant increase," Dr. Thomas Frazier, the chief science officer at Autism Speaks, told CBS News. "Part of the increase is due to the fact that we have reduced disparities both in terms of identifying girls with autism and also African-Americans and Hispanic children with autism. But also part of the increase we are just not sure exactly why that is happening."…
Researchers from the CDC agree that some of the increase may be due to improved identification of autism cases in minority populations. While data shows autism is still more common in white children, the number is growing in Hispanic and black children. …
…"The higher number of black and Hispanic children now being identified with autism could be due to more effective outreach in minority communities and increased efforts to have all children screened for autism so they can get the services they need."
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health contributed to a new U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that finds the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) among 11 surveillance sites as 1 in 54 among children aged 8 years in 2016 (or 1.85 percent). This is a 10 percent increase from the most recent report two years ago when it was 1 in 59, and the highest prevalence since the CDC began tracking ASD in 2000….
Rates have been rising dramatically in the past three decades, but researchers do not know how much of this rise is due to better detection or an increase in “true” cases or both. Technical factors that may be contributing to an increase in ASD include increased awareness, screening, diagnostic services, treatment and intervention services, better documentation of ASD behaviors, and changes in diagnostic criteria….
“We need to know how many children have ASD in order to prepare our communities and services systems,” says Li-Ching Lee, PhD, ScM, a psychiatric epidemiologist with the Bloomberg School’s departments of Epidemiology and Mental Health and the principal investigator for Maryland-ADDM.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recently released 2021 Community Report on Autism found that the prevalence of autism among eight-year-old children is continuing to increase. The report, which is based on data collected in 2018 by the CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network, estimates that 1 in 44 eight-year-old children were identified with autism. This is an increase from the last report which estimated the prevalence to be 1 in 54. These numbers are based on the 11 sites across the United States that the ADDM Network monitors….
“We feel that likely one of the main reasons the prevalence of autism is increasing is improved awareness,” Maureen Durkin, PhD, professor of population health sciences and pediatrics and a Waisman Center investigator, says. “More and more pediatric specialists are being trained to identify and treat autism. The tools for identifying children with developmental concerns have improved and there’s just greater awareness.”…
“For many years, autism was kind of an invisible issue. It wasn’t really on the radar much as a public health concern,” Durkin says. “Once you see the prevalence numbers from this kind of public health surveillance, you can’t just ignore them.
New data from the CDC shows more children than ever before are being diagnosed with Autism. However, researchers cautioned that the rise in diagnoses doesn't necessarily mean autism spectrum disorder is becoming more common.
CBS News: CBS News 1 in 36 Philadelphia
A new CDC report shows one in 36 children identified with an autism spectrum disorder in the United States an increase from one in 44 children in 2018…
"A lot of the increase is likely due to changes in practice, improvements in early detection, availability of services," CDC's child development and disability branch chief Matt Maenner said
The truth is, autism can never be increasing. There is too much at stake. There is so much science now linking vaccines to the development of autism that the only thing that matters is the claim of NO REAL INCREASE.
IF autism has always affected the human population at whatever the current rate is, then tripling the childhood schedule had nothing to do with it.
It would seem that a comparison of never vaccinated and fully vaccinated children to see if autism was equally found in both groups would solve the matter, but no official has ever wanted to look.
Instead, the people in charge at the CDC take no real interest in what autism is doing to kids and merely call for early diagnosing and more intervention.
My question to those getting billions to run health care in America is simple:
WHEN WILL THIS END?
I really want to know.
When will the rate stop increasing? When will doctors finally diagnose all the autistic kids correctly?
Should we just expect any new update in the rate is only temporary? This is clearly the pattern over the last 20 years.
Eventually will it be one in every two U.S. children?
When will every child be autistic?
For two decades the American people seemingly have bought all the lies about autism and its increases.
Now we have to lie to ourselves if we’re going to live with the epidemic of autism.
We have to accept that no increase is real. We have to normalize autism.
We have to pretend that children have always been affected like this, but for some reason, no one paid attention.
We have to train teachers, police, and fire fighters about autistic people while saying that autism has always been here.
We have to be content with the fact that any newborn could end up on the spectrum since there’s no way to prevent autism.
We have to learn to celebrate autism and other forms of “neurodiversity.”
The people working at any public venue will have to be trained to deal with people on the spectrum. We see this beginning now, and we’re told it’s because we’ve become “sensory friendly.”
We can see what all the neurologically damaged children are doing to schools, now image their impact as adults. How are we going to support all the autistic young adults at the same time there are ever-increasing numbers of affected children?
I really want to know?
I’d like every politician running for office to respond please.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.