Autism: Now 1 in 88

What exactly does it mean when the Center for Disease Control and Prevention announces that 1 in 88 children born in the year 2000 have autism?  I believe it means we have a national emergency on our hands!  And lets be clear, those numbers are from 2008.  Can you imagine what the actual current statistics are?

As a pediatric registered nurse for 35 years, I also believe the proponents of the theory “the increase is due to better diagnosis” are not aware of the fact that 30 years ago, we were looking for these children, but there were few to be found.  When I attended Seton Hall University Nursing School in the late 70’s for instance the nursing students had to take an hour bus ride in order to observe the few children with autism we could find. Today, it is rare to meet anyone who doesn’t know someone around the corner, or have a member of their own family affected by autism.

With the yearly estimated cost of autism rising to $137 billion and an educational system ill -equipped to handle the escalating number of special needs children ( to say nothing of the emotional and financial strain experienced by parents) what is a society facing the worst children’s health crisis in our history to do?   What we can’t do, is continue to turn a blind eye to the causes of this epidemic. 

We may not have all of the answers, but what is right in front of us are some clear and simple facts that can no longer be ignored.  We have exposed our children (the most vulnerable among us) to 87,000 chemicals (most created since WW 11) and hundreds of them are showing up in the urine and cord blood of newborns.  We feed our infants processed formulas followed by nutrient deficient food and then we inject them with 36-45 vaccines before the age of 5.   The US specifies we give 26 vaccines in the first year of life (which is higher than any other country in the world).

Additional facts to consider are that despite all of our medical advances, 33 other countries in the world have lower infant mortality rates than the US,  and 54% of US children have been diagnosed with one or more chronic illnesses (including Asthma, Allergies, ADHD, Obesity, Diabetes and Childhood Cancers).

So, what these new numbers (1 in 88) mean is that it is time for us all to wake up and demand the medical system and government agencies that we’ve put in charge of our children’s health do the proper research to uncover the underlying causes and find effective treatments and modes of prevention for reversing this tragic disorder that has affected so many of our children.


Maureen H. McDonnell, RN

I am a registered nurse with a strong interest in helping to reverse the escalating number of children affected by chronic illnesses. After coordinating the Defeat Autism Now! Conferences for 10 years, I joined forces with Jill Urwick to form Saving Our Kids, Healing Our Planet. This website and our conferences focus on the role nutrition and toxins in the environment are playing in Autism, ADHD, childhood cancers, etc. More importantly, our goal is to offer solution-based information that is both practical and affordable.

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3 thoughts on “Autism: Now 1 in 88”

  1. I read an earlier post of yours on the Age of Autism website in which you mentioned ultrasound as a possible contributor to the autism epidemic. Here’s a link to a post of mine on that same topic–you and I are totally on the same page–

    as is a colleague of mine in Houston who had an op-ed published in the Galveston Daily News today:

    If women knew that ultrasound is not a risk-free procedure, many–if not most–would rather be safe than sorry.
    Thanks for your good work.
    Nancy Evans, San Francisco

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