The growth in the number of Americans diagnosed with  Asperger’s and other Autism spectrum disorders is fueling demands to identify the “cause” and to find  a “cure” that to  “fix” the these “conditions” while individuals labeled with these conditions and their families struggle to cope.

While certain therapeutic interventions often provide some relief for stress, anxiety and other complications experienced by those diagnosed with Asperger’s or other Autism spectrum syndromes, make it easier for schools, employers, families or others encountering them, or both,  the current treatments are not a cure and typically provide only limited relief for some of the symptoms.  As a result, individuals with Asperger’s and other Autism spectrum syndromes and the families, friends, employers, schools, businesses and other elements of the community often struggle to cope.

While the search for a cure continues, the pragmatic tools, strategies and insights shared by two accomplished young men bearing these diagnostic labels at www.aspergerexperts.com prompts the possibility that best hope for a next great discovery in the quest to solve the Asperger’s/Autism puzzle lies in a change in perspective and understanding about Asperger’s and Autism.

While the idea that practical solutions to the Asperger’s/Autism puzzle begins with understanding the experience of those diagnosed with Asperger’s and Autism spectrum conditions from the perspective of those assigned that diagnosis makes sense,  the blogging and other perspective, training and resources shared by Asperger Experts Danny Raede & Hayden Mears, both diagnosed with Asperger’s themselves, suggests that the best way to help people with Asperger’s to achieve their highest potential in life lies with a better understanding of their experience and how this impacts their actions.  Drawing from their insights living in society with Asperger’s, Danny and Hayden share invaluable experiences and insights about the Asperger’s experience and how it can induce defensive or other behavior society considers abnormal then suggest practical strategies for those with Asperger’s cope with the demands and expectations of life in “normal” society and the “normal” people and society cope with individuals with Asperger’s more effectively.

The insights Danny and Hayden share suggest Asperger’s and other autism spectrum challenges may be best understood best as a process for harmonizing the functioning and interaction of two different and distinct human operating systems rather than as a disease to be “fixed.”  The insights and tools Danny and Hayden share reflect their own experiences with what works and does not work in efforts to understand and influence how individuals with Asperger’s behave compared to the expectations and assumptions of others in society.  After debugging common stereotypes about the goals, desires, needs, wants, personalities and emotions of people with Asperger’s, Danny and Hayden provide education drawn from their open experience about how distinct sensory differences in their human operating systems trigger undesirable, defensive behavior when these hypersensitivities are not anticipated and managed properly.  In other words, the tension and disruption that occur in the course of dealings between those with Asperger’s and others arises from improperly anticipated or managed hardwired differences in their human operating systems.

By approaching  the Asperger’s challenge like the integration of Apple Mac and Microsoft operating systems rather than the forced replacement of one operating system with the other,  the pragmatic instructions shared by Danny and Hayden become a troubleshooting toolkit that both parties can use to more effectively deal with each other.  Their tools and insights encourage both those bearing the Asperger’s label and others dealing with them to accept that the operating system and principles of people – including those with Asperger’s-function differently.  Their experience reflects that the pragmatic solutions for helping those with Asperger’s function better in ordinary society lies in abandoning efforts to cure individuals with Asperger’s by forcing the reprogramming of their operating system in favor of all parties working accept these differences and working together to bridge the difference thru mutual understanding, collaboration, compromise and respect.  Approached from this perspective, the Asperger’s solution becomes not a cure, but an integration and communication management process with the goal of effectively integrating and managing the interactions between those with Asperger’s to the maximum benefit of all parties.

The resources shared, while not a panacea, provide valuable functional strategies that help people with Asperger’s cope with those around them and those in the community and family to interact more effectively with individuals with Asperger’s.  While helping to ease today’s challenges, the insights shared of Asperger Experts who know what it is like to live in society with their condition provides equally valuable understanding that challenges all to embrace the notion that people with and without Asperger’s function somewhat differently, they share many commonalities. The shared goal should be to look beyond the labels and stereotypes by understanding these differences and working together to accommodate each other with mutual respect and understanding.

About Project COPE: The Coalition On Patient Empowerment &  Coalition on Responsible Health Policy

If you have knowledge, experience or other resources that could help patients, families, communities, or the government better understand or cope with  Asperger’s or other health care conditions, costs of care, or other challenges affecting Americans and the American health care system, we encourage you to get involved and share your insights.

As American leaders continue to struggle to deal with these and other mounting problems impacting the U.S. health care system, the input of individual Americans and businesses and community leaders is more critical than ever.  Get involved in helping to shape improvements and solutions to the U.S. health care system and the Americans it cares for by sharing your ideas and input through the Coalition For Responsible Health Care Policy  and exchanging information and ideas for helping American families deal with their family member’s illnesses, disabilities and other healthcare challenges through PROJECT COPE: Coalition On Patient Empowerment.

Sharing and promoting the use of practical practices, tools, information and ideas that patients and their families, health care providers, employers, health plans, communities and policymakers can share and offer to help patients, their families and others in their care communities to understand and work together to better help the patients, their family and their professional and private care community plan for and manage these  needs is the purpose of

The Coalition and its Project COPE arise and run on the belief that health care reform and policy must be patient centric and patient empowering.  The best opportunity to improve access to quality, affordable health care for all Americans is for every American, and every employer, insurer, and community organization to seize the opportunity to be good Samaritans.  The government, health care providers, insurers and community organizations can help by providing education and resources to make understanding and dealing with the realities of illness, disability or aging easier for a patient and their family, the affected employers and others. At the end of the day, however, caring for people requires the human touch.  Americans can best improve health care by not waiting for someone else to step up:  Step up and help bridge the gap when you or your organization can. Speak up to help communicate and facilitate when you can.  Building health care neighborhoods filled with good neighbors throughout the community is the key.

The outcome of this latest health care reform push is only a small part of a continuing process.  Whether or not the Affordable Care Act makes financing care better or worse, the same challenges exist.  The real meaning of the enacted reforms will be determined largely by the shaping and implementation of regulations and enforcement actions which generally are conducted outside the public eye.  Americans individually and collectively clearly should monitor and continue to provide input through this critical time to help shape constructive rather than obstructive policy. Regardless of how the policy ultimately evolves, however, Americans, American businesses, and American communities still will need to roll up their sleeves and work to deal with the realities of dealing with ill, aging and disabled people and their families.  While the reimbursement and coverage map will change and new government mandates will confine providers, payers and patients, the practical needs and challenges of patients and families will be the same and confusion about the new configuration will create new challenges as patients, providers and payers work through the changes.

We also encourage you and others to help develop real meaningful improvements by joining PROJECT COPE: Coalition On Patient Empowerment and by sharing ideas, tools and other solutions and other resources. The Coalition For Responsible Health Care Policy provides a resource that concerned Americans can use to share, monitor and discuss the Health Care Reform law and other health care, insurance and related laws, regulations, policies and practices and options for promoting access to quality, affordable healthcare through the design, administration and enforcement of these regulations.

You also may be interested in one or more of the following other recent articles published on the Coalition for Responsible Health Care Reform electronic publication available here, our electronic Solutions Law Press Health Care Update publication available here, and/or our HR & Benefits Update electronic publication available here.

You also can get details about how to arrange for your employees or other communities to participate in training on “Building Your Family’s Health Care Toolkit,”  using the “PlayForLife” resources to organize low-cost wellness programs in your workplace, school, church or other communities, and other process improvement, compliance and other training and other resources for health care providers, employers, health plans, community leaders and others here.

For Advice, Training & Other Resources

Should your business need legal advice about the taxability of or other requirements on tips, gratuities or other compensation,  assistance assessing or resolving potential past or existing compliance exposures, or monitoring and responding to these or other workforce, benefits and compensation, performance and risk management, compliance, enforcement or management concerns, the author of this update, attorney Cynthia Marcotte Stamer may be able to help.

Board Certified in Labor & Employment Law, Past Chair of the ABA RPTE Employee Benefit & Other Compensation Arrangements Group, Co-Chair and Past Chair of the ABA RPTE Welfare Plan Committee, Vice Chair of the ABA TIPS Employee Benefit Plans Committee, an ABA Joint Committee On Employee Benefits Council representative, Past Chair of the ABA Health Law Section Managed Care & Insurance Section, a Fellow in the American College of Employee Benefit Counsel, ABA, and State Bar of Texas, Ms. Stamer has more than 25 years’ experience advising health plan and employee benefit, insurance, financial services, employer and health industry clients about these and other matters. Ms. Stamer has extensive experience advising and assisting health plans and insurers about ACA, and a wide range of other plan design, administration, data security and privacy and other compliance risk management policies.  Ms. Stamer also regularly represents clients and works with Congress and state legislatures, EBSA, IRS, EEOC, OCR and other HHS agencies, state insurance and other regulators, and others.   She also publishes and speaks extensively on health and other employee benefit plan and insurance, staffing and human resources, compensation and benefits, technology, public policy, privacy, regulatory and public policy and other operations and risk management concerns. Her publications and insights appear in the Health Care Compliance Association, Atlantic Information Service, Bureau of National Affairs, World At Work, The Wall Street Journal, Business Insurance, the Dallas Morning News, Modern Health Care, Managed Healthcare, Health Leaders, and a many other national and local publications.

You can review other recent human resources, employee benefits and internal controls publications and resources and additional information about the employment, employee benefits and other experience of the Cynthia Marcotte Stamer here. If you or someone else you know would like to receive future updates about developments on these and other concerns, please be sure that we have your current contact information – including your preferred e-mail – by creating or updating your profile at www.cynthiastamer.com or by registering to receive these and other updates here.  Recent examples of these updates include:

NOTE:  This article is provided for educational purposes.  It is does not provide legal advice, establish any attorney-client relationship or provide or serve as a substitute for legal advice to any individual or organization.  Readers must engage properly qualified legal counsel to secure legal advice about the rules discussed in light of specific circumstances.ANY STATEMENTS CONTAINED HEREIN ARE NOT INTENDED OR WRITTEN BY THE WRITER TO BE USED, AND NOTHING CONTAINED HEREIN CAN BE USED BY YOU OR ANY OTHER PERSON, FOR THE PURPOSE OF (1) AVOIDING PENALTIES THAT MAY BE IMPOSED UNDER FEDERAL TAX LAW, or (2) PROMOTING, MARKETING OR RECOMMENDING TO ANOTHER PARTY ANY TAX-RELATED TRANSACTION OR MATTER ADDRESSED HEREIN.  ©2015 Cynthia Marcotte Stamer, P.C. Non-exclusive license to republish granted to Solutions Law Press.  All other rights reserved.

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