Autism Speaks Vividly On Our Broken Healthcare System

Another essay by John “Hai” Knapp –

There may be clips pasted from other two essays, “Needing Health Insurance and Having a Mild Disability” and “Why I Believe the Christians Should Call For Healthcare Reforms. This may initially be used to form a discussion on the Autism Speaks Social Network; but it may also try to expose where parents of autistic children are forced to fight with the private insurance (business type) company.

My personal opinion is that we need to go to a single-payer national medical insurance system, like HR 676. I can be wrong about “single-payer”, but doing nothing sure isn’t the answer. This may not instantly cure the problem where insurance companies don’t want to cover therapies for children with autism; but it will be a giant step from where we are at now, with all healthcare needs, including needs of those challenged with autism and their families.

Here is a large clip from “Why I Believe Christians Should Call For Healthcare Reforms.” Due to a mild disability, I had a strong taste of what it is like to be stuck in the middle; should be able to work and obtain healthcare, too well off to qualify for Medicaid; but finding it a nightmare to compete in the recession narrowed job market with jobs that pay a living wage and has health insurance benefits. I am challenged by Aspergers Syndrome, which is a mild form of autism. It doesn’t mean that I can’t work; I have limitations imposing incredible hardships obtaining living wage jobs that carry health insurance benefit. This should be an extremely strong warrant to rethink our current system of connecting the privilege of having health insurance connected to the job.

I have long had a concern about families with an autistic child. Often private insurance won’t cover the therapies needed by the child. They even use excuses like “experimental” or “the child is hopeless, we won’t pay for therapies.” Failure to obtain therapies on a timely basis may profoundly affect the child for the rest of his life. The therapies are extremely important. Some things are not meant to be business; including our lives. Okay, keep making business of our lives; at least stop making business out of the life of a child. For our economy, it can even make the difference between the child becoming able to earn a gainful living or becoming institutionalized and having to live the rest of his/her life in an assisted living situation, from our taxes. I’m not saying that failure to address the needs of autistic children is the only thing wrong with our privatized health insurance industries.

I will elaborate further on the autistic child failing to get the needed therapies and other medical treatments connected with his/her autism. You have heard the saying from “The United Negro College Fund” ‘A mind is a terrible thing to waste!’ It has also occurred to me that almost everybody that was a genius in our history had some amount of autism. An autistic mind may also be a terrible thing to waste; we could be throwing away valuable resources by failing to treat children challenged with autism. We could be throwing away future “Einstein” “Thomas Edison” “Emily Dickenson” “Peter Tork from the Monkees” “Isaac Newton” “Nicola Tesla” “Robert Moog” etc. Even if they don’t become a valuable resources, please consider this; they are still human beings; they deserve to be treated right by our society. This means that they can receive the therapies they need regardless of whether the parents can afford to pay for them or not.

I understand that employers need someone who can do the job for them; but are we going to hang the privilege of having health insurance on employment and cut people off who employers don’t find of value from the privilege of health insurance? WWJD? I’m not talking about “I want a Rolls Royce” “I want a nice big house” “I want a plasma TV”; I’m talking about health insurance (or a system letting us pay for our healthcare), an absolute necessity. People can’t help having disabilities (mild or severe). People can’t help having a skin color that is different from the majority. People can’t choose where they have been born. WWJD?

I will add this conclusion; Autism does speak vividly through of the need to have a right kind of healthcare reforms. Most people, especially those who have ever been hospitalized know how important it is to have health insurance. My condition doesn’t prevent me from working, but may prevent me from competing for a living wage job and the kind that lets me have insurance. If a person can’t find a job that either has the health benefit affordably, or pays enough to be able to buy insurance how can he have health insurance?

What if it were you? You need health insurance every bit as much as anybody else; but it is harder for you to compete for available jobs that let you have the insurance. If you were knocked out of the competition for such a job, and too well off for Medicaid would you still say we have such a great healthcare system? Please remember the golden rule. Our Lord taught us that on “Sermon an the Mount.” Our Lord has also practiced that and gave His life as a ransom for our sins. It is not just “WWJD? Or What would Jesus Do?” It is “What Has Jesus Done?”


  1. Dan Richards on October 5, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    It seems to me you are using WWJD as a shield to get what it is you feel you are entitled to.

    I am a Christian but admittedly am not an authority on Biblical teachings. I do know that Jesus did not teach that insurance (linked to employemnet or not) was to be available to everyone. What sticks with me about Biblical teaching is that we are repeatedly asked to take care of the poor, widows, and other needly people. The “we” is in context of the church – not the government – not through taxes – not through entitlement.

    Actually, when you get right down to it we are to trust God for everything in our lives. Giving, like Jesus taught, was to be an expression of thankfulness for all that God has provided. So, in your case, it seems that you should be thankful for life, for your child (even though handicapped), and that God loves you both. Whatever God provides to any of us – through employment – through insurance – through the giving of others – is a gift.

    It seems wrong to imply that God owes you a gift.

  2. bernhardbx on July 22, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    hey all, hi there mods and others,im new right here and im coming from germany, poor english