To the Editor:
Autism Society Southeastern Ohio applauds Ohio Gov. Kasich for including the expansion of Ohio's Medicaid program in the budget and encourages all Ohio legislators to support it. Medicaid expansion will help Ohioans and individuals with autism who currently have no health coverage through an employer and who under the current Medicaid eligibility criteria do not qualify. Medicaid expansion will:
• Provide access to families who currently have no access to medical and behavioral health services and are currently struggling to support their loved one with autism.
• Expand the eligibility criteria to qualify for Medicaid benefits to 1.5 million people in Ohio who currently have no health insurance.
• Generate $23.8 billion in additional federal funds for Ohio's economy through 2019 to help provide health services.
• Support individuals with autism through providing access to counseling, social work and psychiatric services.
Autism Society Southeastern Ohio believes expanding Ohio's Medicaid program is the next step in providing coverage for individuals with autism in Ohio.
(president, Autism Society Southeastern Ohio)