Today in a conference call with Kathleen Sebelius and Thomas Insel, HHS told a small circle of autism groups that they would be releasing the new 1 in 100 autism rate on Monday.
They cautioned however, that they didn't know if the increase was a real increase or whether greater awareness... changes in measurement methods... better diagnosis... blah blah blah... because apparently our government doesn't even read their own publications.
The whole thing was so predictable that I could have written it for them yesterday.
AAP will also be releasing autism information on Monday, but we were told that it was embargoed.
Sebelius (before ditching out on the call five minutes in) also announced that Barack Obama was all over Autism, dropping 85 million for research into genetics, services, "evidence based treatment" (which is code for everything but biomedical which we refuse to research so it can't have any "evidence" so we don't have to recommend it) and telehealth (video conferencing for rural families).
No where were the words, "diet", "vaccine", "environmental", "toxic", "neuroinflamation", "autoimmune", "recovery" or any of those other words that I was looking for, ever spoken.
They did however excel in self-congratulations, Insel yelling "ouch!" at one point as he apparently dislocated his shoulder, while patting himself on the back. Pray for his speedy recovery. I am sure his Pharma Bros. can get him some good pain meds.
The conference call was not announced to the press or public, but merely in an email sent out at 9 am inviting around fifty people in the autism community (almost exclusively friendly to the administration) to the 2pm call with a "sorry for the short notice".
After listening to the call, my cynicism is increased, and I continue to encourage my readers NOT to wait for the government to do anything to prevent your child from contracting autism or to treat him. If you are reading this blog you are likely way ahead of Insel and company, and who knows how many years it will be before they catch up with us.
If this is the Obama approach, then I expect it will be at least Summer of 2013 before we hear a conference call from the administration that dares to utter the shocking phrase, "gastrointestinal damage".
They did talk about services, but I can't even give them the benefit of the doubt on that today. So when a child actually benefits from the 85 million being dropped on all this busy work, I will let you know.
And if your child benefits from anything Obama/Sebelius/Insel does, then make sure to drop me a note.
Until then, I just see this as talk because the heat is on and they have to look productive.
UPDATE: I was going to ask a question, bu the Q and A period ended as I was about to do so. Apparently several people asked questions that challenged the administration, but they were screened out by the call administrator. David Kirby's post on the matter.