New Ontario Autism Program Announcement from the Ministry of Children and Youth Services
On June 8, 2017, Minister Coteau announced the new Ontario Autism Program will ensure autism services for children and youth are delivered consistently across the province, allow for flexibility and choice based on each child’s needs, and give families confidence in receiving quality services.
On June 26, families will begin to transition into the new OAP. The key components of the new program, beginning this month, include:
- A single point of access. There will be one entry point to the OAP in each of the nine service areas to make it easier for families to access services for their child.
- Family-centred decision making. As key partners in their child’s care, families will be actively engaged in the assessment, goal-setting and intervention planning process for their child.
- Collaborative approach to service. A foundation of the new OAP will be the collaborative approach taken by community support service providers, clinicians and educators to support children’s needs at home, during service and in school.
- Service based on need. Services will be flexible and individualized. The intensity and duration of the services a child or youth receives is based on their needs and strengths, regardless of age. Each child’s service plan will be determined by clinical assessment.
- A direct funding option. A new direct funding option will be implemented by the end of this year. This will provide all families with a choice between receiving direct service or receiving funding to purchase their child’s service.
- Safe, effective autism services. The province intends to regulate ABA practitioners to help ensure families receive safe, high-quality services, have confidence in their providers and know where to go if they have a concern.
The government is committed to ensuring families are supported through a smooth and seamless transition as they enter the new OAP. Transition planning within the new program will be individualized, planned in advance and will be achieved in partnership with each child’s family, OAP professionals and service providers. Children and youth with a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder from a qualified professional will be eligible for the OAP up until the age of 18.
The province has worked closely with families, caregivers, advocates, clinicians and providers to build the new OAP, and will continue to engage with key stakeholders, including the OAP Advisory Committee, on the design and implementation of the new program. The new OAP will be fully in place by spring 2018.
To read the press release on the Ministry’s website: click here.
Dedicated Phone Line for the Ontario Autism Program: 1-888-284-8340
Families affected by these changes, or who have questions about the new Ontario Autism Program, can call 1-888-284-8340 for information, or contact their regional office or service provider.
For more information on the MCYS changes to the Ontario Autism Program, please visit: http://www.children.gov.on.ca/htdocs/English/topics/specialneeds/autism/ontario-autism-program.aspx
Kinark Contact Information
Families on the wait list:
While Kinark does not provide ABA services; we do work collaboratively with our partners to manage the wait list for ABA-based services for community agencies that provide services in the Central and East Regions. If you are on the Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) or Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) wait list and have questions, families can contact their Family Resource and Support Coordinator or Kinark’s main office at 905-479-0158 or toll-free at 1-800-283-3377. If you are directed to voicemail, please leave a message and your call will be returned.
Kinark clients currently receiving services:
Kinark provides IBI, an evidence-based treatment used to improve the learning rate for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. For families currently receiving IBI services and supports, Kinark’s Clinical Supervisors are available to answer your questions.
Please call your Clinical Supervisor or Kinark’s main office at 905-479-0158 or toll-free at 1-800-283-3377. If you are directed to voicemail, please leave a message and your call will be returned.