Muddy Creek,PA – 21-year-old adult with autism,Travis Roher, has aged out of the state funded programs that he needs. Like most states, Pennsylvania cuts off services for adults with autism once they turn 21.
This has proved troubling for Roher and his parents because with no set schedule to adhere to, Roher will let his obsession with fans get the better of him. He once drove to Brightbill Body Works in Lebanon to attempt to buy a $90,000 bus because of the fans they have. This past April he was sent to Ephrata Community Hospital because he screamed that he wanted to be a bus driver for a solid two hours.
Rohar is not alone. In Pennsylvania there are more then 8,400 adults on the spectrum who can’t get funding for the services they need. That number is expected to rise well above 31,000 by 2020-6 years from now. Currently only 518 people received funding-a number that has thankfully gone up since Pennsylvania added more funding to programs for adults on the spectrum under a Medicaid waiver in 2008.
But this produced a long waiting list. To his parents delight, Roher reached the top of said list last February but was denied help on the bases that he was more then 90 days away from turning 21. He’s now at the bottom of the list, which will make his situation worse.
Mrs. Rohrer told Lancaster Online:
“Travis tells me that he’s lonely, and he’ll tell me that he misses his (school) friends”
Then further adds:
“but he’s just not able to reach out. He’ll say to me, ‘I want to be normal. I don’t know how.’”
The original article by Jeff Hawkes on the Lancaster Online website can be read here