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Affects of Healthcare Mandate on Autism/ Special Needs

Over the past year or so I have been trying to find a very politically correct way to inform families that the new health care mandates have a very negative affect on families with special needs and autism.  Unfortunately, there is no politically correct way to do this because the mandate is not at all PC.  And beginning in January,  two of the line items in the Mandate will begin to drastically affect all of us.

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Here are the two biggest concerns for families with medical and special needs:


Of the twenty new or higher taxes in Obamacare, below are the five worst that will be foisted upon Americans for the first time on January 1, 2013:

The Obamacare Medical Device Tax – a $20 billion tax increase:  Medical device manufacturers employ 409,000 people in 12,000 plants across the country. Obamacare imposes a new 2.3 percent excise tax on gross sales – even if the company does not earn a profit in a given year.  In addition to killing small business jobs and impacting research and development budgets, this will increase the cost of your health care – making everything from pacemakers to prosthetics more expensive.

The Obamacare “Special Needs Kids Tax” – a $13 billion tax increase:  The 30-35 million Americans who use a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) at work to pay for their family’s basic medical needs will face a new government cap of $2,500 (currently the accounts are unlimited under federal law, though employers are allowed to set a cap).

There is one group of FSA owners for whom this new cap will be particularly cruel and onerous: parents of special needs children.  There are several million families with special needs children in the United States, and many of them use FSAs to pay for special needs education. Tuition rates at one leading school that teaches special needs children in Washington, D.C. (National Child Research Center) can easily exceed $14,000 per year. Under tax rules, FSA dollars can be used to pay for this type of special needs education. This Obamacare tax provision will limit the options available to these families. (John Kartch, ATR)

These are important issues to take note of so that you can plan for ongoing therapies and services.  And if your child needs a medical device that can currently be paid for with funds from your medical accounts, you will want to do so now.  We wish the media had picked up on these important oversights earlier; however, since they have largely chosen not do so, we wanted to make you aware.

Becky Cash.


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