Parents Of Child With Autism Fight For Insurance Coverage In OK

Monday, April 20th 2015, 5:27 pm
By: Karl Torp

The parents of autistic children said they are frustrated by insurance hurdles in Oklahoma.

Bobby and Christa Schaefer credited 30 hours of therapy a week for their son's behavioral improvement.

The parents were told the 4-year-old had moderate to severe autism.

At first, the Schaefer's insurance company refused to pay for their son's therapy.

“We're worried that he's going to regress if we lose this,” said Bobby Schaefer.

The insurance company now said it will pay for the treatments until the end of the year.

“Next year is still completely up in the air,” added Schaefer.

So wearing t-shirts that read 'Oklahoma autism strong,' the family has taken their battle to lawmakers.

According to Austim Speaks, Oklahoma is one of only five states that hasn't passed or is pursuing autism insurance reform laws.

“I'm frustrated with the system. I'm frustrated with the lack of support ,” said Bobby Schaefer, who met with lawmakers Monday.

The Schaefers hope to raise enough awareness, that a lawmaker will introduce a reform bill in the fall.

If nothing happens, the family said it will move to a state where their son's treatments are covered.

“A kid shouldn't have to go without a medical necessity like this,” said Schaefer.