Autism Society of Wisconsin


This holiday season, please join us to recognize the small acts of kindness happening in our communities everyday. Recognize someone in your life who made a small gesture that left a lasting impression. This could be a teacher who made a special connection with you or your child, a family member who helped make family gatherings enjoyable for everyone, a local advocate who worked to develop a sensory friendly community, a friend/neighbor who offered support on a difficult day, or a person with autism who touched your life. Honor them by making a dedicated gift to the Autism Society of Wisconsin. We'll send a dedication card to the honoree notifying them of your meaningful gift. Your gift will support Autism Society of Wisconsin programs, helping even more families affected by autism. Click here to make a Gift for Autism.

Welcome to the Autism Society of Wisconsin

The Autism Society of Wisconsin (ASW) is dedicated to improving the lives of all affected by autism in Wisconsin by providing information and referral, family support, advocacy, professional development, resource development, and by raising awareness and acceptance. ASW sponsors an annual spring and fall conference, a free quarterly newsletter, provides information and referral and monitors a peer support listserv. The Autism Society of Wisconsin is the voice for autism in Wisconsin, advocating for individuals with autism, their families and those who work with them.

Autism Society of Wisconsin
1477 Kenwood Drive
Menasha, WI 54952


Autism Prevalence Rates – New 2016 Report

April 1, 2016 - Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that the incidence rate of autism among eight year olds in the United States remains at 1 out of 68 children.

This updated report occurs every two years, with the previous report being released from the CDC in April 2014. To read the full report go here.  The report is based on data collected from the Autism and Development Disabilities Monitoring Network (ADDM) which has 11 sites across the United States, including a site in southeastern Wisconsin. Wisconsin specific data show that 1 in 92 children (age 8) have Autism Spectrum Disorder, which is an increase from 1 in 102 children from the 2014 report. Read more about Wisconsin specific data here.

“Today's announcement that the updated incidence rate of autism has not changed in the past two years tells us that there continues to be a significant number of individuals with an autism diagnosis who need the help of our organization. The CDC’s advisement that the updated incidence rate should not be considered an indication of stabilization of the incidence of autism, reaffirms the importance of the Autism Society’s commitment to addressing the continued disparity among children based on their race as to when an early diagnosis occurs. We know that the earlier an individual receives a diagnosis, the better it is to help support the needs of the individual diagnosed,” said Scott Badesch, President/CEO of the Autism Society of America.

More from the CDC:

New Data on Autism: Five Important Facts to Know

CDC estimates 1 in 68 school-aged children have autism; no change from previous estimate

2016: A New Behavioral Treatment Benefit to be Provided Under Wisconsin Medicaid and Other FowardHealth Programs

In July 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) directed states to provide coverage of autism treatment services as a regular statewide Medicaid benefit.  In response, the Department of Health Services (DHS) is transitioning coverage of autism treatment services from the CLTS Waiver Program to a new behavioral treatment benefit under ForwardHealth. ForwardHealth includes BadgerCare Plus, Medicaid, and the Katie Beckett Program.

Issued December, 2, 2105
Department of Health Services - Behavioral Treatment Benefit and Other Support Services for Children with Autism Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ'S) By Families

The behavioral treatment benefit will be available beginning January 1, 2016, for the following groups:

The new behavioral treatment benefit will be funded as a regular ForwardHealth benefit (like a physician service or a well-child screening) instead of through the CLTS Waiver Program.The CLTS Waiver Program will continue to provide support services to meet children's assessed needs.

To find out more about the new benefit, to view a web cast of a recent training for families, and view the handouts of the training, visit the Department of Heath Services website at

President Obama Signs ABLE Act Into Law

President Obama on Friday signed into law the Achieving a Better Life Experience(ABLE) Act which will allow families with children with disabilities to save for college and other expenses in tax-deferred accounts. The legislation was co-sponsored by Sens. Bob Casey (D-PA) and Richard Burr (R-NC). The ABLE Act, first introduced in 2008, amends the Internal Revenue Service Code to allow use of tax-free savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. Families will be allowed to use the funds in the savings accounts to cover education, housing, medical and transportation expenses, among others. Now that the President has signed the bill into federal law, it will be up to the individual states to enact the bill. Until now, families with children with disabilities had little incentive to save for their future. If they saved more than $2,000 for college, an apartment or transportation to work, they risked losing critical benefits for their children, including medical and supplemental coverage. This piece of legislation is an important step toward empowering people with disabilities to achieve independence and affirms self-sufficiency.

10 things to know about ABLE Accounts from the National Disability Institute

The APA releases DSM-5 in May of 2013

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