A Message for the Autism Community about COVID-19
March 19, 2020
As the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic sweep the country, Autism New Jersey knows there are special considerations and concerns for the autism community. We acknowledge the enormous impact on all aspects of your lives.
In addition to your everyday challenges, you may be concerned about:
- Increased exposure to COVID-19 (due to difficulties with social distancing and hygiene)
- Inordinate amount of unstructured time
- Skill regression
- Challenging behavior from confusion over the significant change in routine
- Limited or no access to educational and therapeutic services
- Medication availability
- Secondary medical conditions that make contracting COVID-19 riskier
- and so much more
These are all substantial challenges that will likely require substantial changes in your lives. Perhaps this is a shuffling of the daily schedule. Perhaps this is total life overhaul to provide 24/7 supervision and frequent engagement. Perhaps this is a daily, hourly, or even momentary change in expectations.
Whatever these upcoming weeks hold, Autism New Jersey is here to help you quickly access the latest, most relevant information.
Our “coronavirus hub” includes:
- Services through state agencies, insurance, and school
- Ideas to engage individuals with autism who need such support
- Self-care for caregivers
- Financial relief through state and federal legislation and your own employment rights
Since the situation is changing daily and solutions are still being considered, we may not have all the answers but will try our best to answer your questions and offer a compassionate ear.
Experience Our Power of Connection
Autism New Jersey is following recommendations from the CDC and state Department of Health and is implementing telework and remote meetings for its employees to help reduce the community spread of the coronavirus.
During this time, our 800.4.AUTISM Helpline will remain open. Please leave a message with specific dates and times you are available for a call-back, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also message us via our website, and we’ll aim to reply promptly.
We remain focused on our mission to be a resource for the autism community. With a fluid situation and great uncertainty, we’ll share relevant, accurate information as it becomes available. We encourage you to regularly visit our central hub of coronavirus resources for the autism community.