March Digest


National News

Collapse Of Health Care Bill Leaves Medicaid Unscathed
DisabilityScoop – A Republican proposal to overhaul the nation’s health care system and fundamentally alter Medicaid is off the table — at least for now — and that’s good news for people with disabilities, advocates say.

Autism rates in the United States explained
Spectrum – The prevalence of autism in the United States has risen steadily since researchers first began tracking it in 2000. The rise in the rate has sparked fears of an autism ‘epidemic.’ But experts say the bulk of the increase stems from a growing awareness of autism and changes to the condition’s diagnostic criteria.

FDA Seeks Input On Autism Treatments
DisabilityScoop – Federal regulators are looking for insight from people with autism and their families as they consider the need for new drug treatments to address the developmental disorder.

Autism And The Drive To Explain And Explore
NPR – Some people describe these drives to explore and explain as a key characteristic of our species; others highlight their intimate role in learning. It’s of particular interest, then, to understand the basis for exploration and explanation-seeking, and to investigate how they affect the way we interact with the world.



Parents’ traits predict autism features in children
Spectrum – Children whose parents have a condition such as autism tend to have severe restricted interests and repetitive behaviors, even if they don’t have a diagnosis themselves, according to a new study.

Oxytocin boosts social skills in autism-related syndrome
Spectrum – One week of treatment with the hormone oxytocin improves social skills and feeding in infants with Prader-Willi syndrome1.



Meet Julia, the first ‘Sesame Street’ Muppet with autism
Today – A new Muppet named Julia is joining the diverse and inclusive “Sesame Street” crew that has been part of so many childhoods. TODAY’s Jenna Bush Hager reports on how the new character was introduced to foster understanding of autism spectrum disorders, after which Julia joins TODAY live, along with her Muppet friend Abby Cadabby and Sherrie Westin from Sesame Workshop.

Book Review: Autism Spectrum Disorder in the Inclusive Classroom, 2nd Edition
PsychCentral – Brian was the first autistic child I had the opportunity to work with at the therapeutic riding center. Later that same day, I met James. He sat high atop his horse talking incessantly about naval boats as we paraded around the arena together.


IBM Watson Takes On Autism
Forbes – IBM Watson burst onto the world stage in 2011 when it participated in the trivia-based game show Jeopardy!. For its latest endeavor, Watson is looking to improve the quality of life for individuals with autism and other cognitive disorders.


Teens & Adults

Learning, as an adult woman, you have autism
CNN – Laura James, 47, is a successful journalist and author. She’s a wife to Tim and mother to four adult children. She likes fashion, cats and writing. She’s eloquent and quick-witted.
She also has autism.

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