According to a study in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, the U.S. is facing a “tsunami” of future autism cases and ever-increasing costs. Those costs will shift permanently onto federal and state governments as parents of the epidemic’s first generation begin to die. In a study I co-authored with Mark Blaxill and Cynthia Nevison, we projected autism’s annual costs to the U.S. over the next 40 years will jump from the current $238 billion to $589 billion by 2030, $1.36 trillion by 2040 and $5.54 trillion by 2060. We calculated future autism annual costs until the year 2060 by looking at four factors: Historical autism spectrum disorder (ASD) prevalence with time trend data for both severe and full-spectrum rates. A matrix of cost per individual for multiple categories applied to multiple age cohorts. Projections of future size of ASD population. Inflation projections by cost component.
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