The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons with autism spectrum disorder. The ASP has been in the forefront of providing services and training to families living with autism.

10 November 2013

ASP lobbies for inclusive health benefits

The Autism Society Philippines is one with many disability groups in the inclusion of our unique medical and therapeutic needs under the benefits of the country’s universal healthcare program, Philhealth and of the private health maintenance organization (HMO) insurance.

In a position paper submitted to the Senate in September 2013, the ASP saw the need to engineer more laws and policies towards inclusive development. Among them was the availability of creative mechanisms for funding our medical and therapy costs. The parents of the individuals on the spectrum would welcome reforms that will help them fund the interventions for their children. One hundred percent tax-deductibility of intervention expenses of parents for their children with disabilities, Philhealth-supported therapy, interventions included in HMO coverage are only some of the creative solutions our sector would like our leaders to champion.

The Occupational Therapy Association of the Philippines, Inc. (OTAPI) -- a valued ASP partner in this cause -- has proactively appealed for occupational therapy services to be accredited for Philhealth coverage. OTAPI is currently working on proposed changes to the implementing rules and regulations to the Republic Act 9241 otherwise known as the Philhealth Act.

ASP Vice President Cecilia Sicam and Program Coordinator Raph Torralba, Mrs. Nelia De Jesus of NCDA, Christopher Molin of PDAO-Naga City and Mr. Jose Dela Cruz of Philippine School for the Deaf at the ceremonial launching of the Z-Morph Prosthesis Benefit Package introduced by Philhealth on 31 October 2013.

As ASP National works with the government agencies and private organizations, we enjoin ASP chapter leaders and members to be part of the process of change. You can do something today.

As honest taxpayers, we need universal access to free medical and therapy for our family members with autism. Please write a letter or submit a community petition to your representatives in Congress to inspire them to ACT.

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