Medicaid cuts are forcing some adults with autism to make a tough call: choose between therapy to address their behavioral needs or life skills training.

In Idaho, many of the state’s 2,000 adults with autism take advantage of both psychosocial rehabilitation and developmental therapy through Medicaid. Under a temporary plan designed to help lower costs, residents are now required to choose between the two programs, at least until July 2011.

Trouble is that the two types of therapy aren’t mutually exclusive, say families and therapy providers. Developmental therapy tackles everything from independent living skills to coordination and dealing with sensory overload. Meanwhile, psychosocial rehabilitation focuses on social skills and coping with anger and other emotions.

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Some Medicaid providers are critical of the current system, calling the services duplicate and ineffective for clients. Others, however, warn that by taking away needed therapy for a vulnerable population, lawmakers risk facing higher costs down the line, should these individuals require emergency intervention, reports the (Twin Falls, Idaho) Times-News. To read more click here.

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