A new law, attached to the economic stimulus package signed by President Bush, will make it easier for people to obtain treatment for a range of mental conditions, including autism. As many as 113 million people, including 83 million in employer-sponsored plans, will receive better coverage by January 2010.
Widespread governmental support for this bill can most likely be attributed to the research that indicates biological factors are one cause of mental illness. Also, a number of companies now specialize in managing mental health benefits, making the costs to insurers and employers more affordable. Many consider this a milestone in the quest for civil rights.