Autism Partnership welcomes the Government funding support for special child care
13 January 2016, Hong Kong–Autism Partnership (AP) is glad to see that the Government has outlined a plan for children with special needs in the 2016 Policy Address where it is stated that services need to be provided to the children as soon as possible and that resources need to be optimized accordingly to cater for these children.
Associate Director of Autism Partnership and Behavioral Therapist Mr. Toby Mountjoy, states: “We are glad to see that the Government is striving to provide service and support for children with special needs to shorten the duration of treatment. Meanwhile, in addition to the current solution, we hope that the Government would consider other therapy treatments, such as the Applied Behavior Analysis (“ABA”). ABA is recognized as a safe and effective treatment for autistic children by the United States, and has been endorsed by various countries globally. ABA has been shown to be the most effective treatment for autism and is widely funded by the government and insurance companies in the USA, the U.K. and Canada. We are hopeful that children in Hong Kong may also receive this life changing treatment in the future.”The plan in the 2016 Policy Address for the support of children with special needs stated the following:
- The Pilot Scheme on On-site Pre-school Rehabilitation Services introduced in 2015-16 provides timely support for children waitlisted for services. The Government has approved the provision of over 2,900 on-site service places by 16 NGOs for more than 450 kindergartens or child care centres.
- To fulfil the performance pledge of providing assessment and professional diagnosis within six months, the Department of Health will set up an additional Child Assessment Centre. The Government will also increase the training hours for those children on the waiting list for special child care centres.
- Some middle-income parents are concerned that after their passing the care for their children with special needs, particularly those with intellectual disabilities, would be disrupted. In order to address these concerns, The Labor and Welfare Bureau will establish a working group to explore the feasibility of setting up a public trust and review the related guardianship system, with the objective of providing affordable services.
– End –