Hippotherapy: using horse interactions to leverage gains made by physical, occupational, and speech therapists, as well as mental health practitioners increasingly moves into mainstream medical practice. At BITS ETC we can make a difference by offering these interventions free of charge to all clients who could be positively impacted by spending time with our therapy herd. Our two most utilized programs target those with autism, or Uniformed Professionals..Veterans, and First Responders.
1 in 42 boys in the US lives with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) according to 2006-2008 statistics from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The total cost per year for children with ASD is estimated to be between 11.5 to 60.0 billion dollars. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong developmental disability that include deficits in social communication and social interaction and restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities.
BITS ETC impacts 'on the ground' development literally when children say their first words while riding on one of our therapy horses. By offering a medical model of intervention, pairing OT, PT, speech, and mental health practitioners with clients on the spectrum, we can leverage treatment and optimize outcomes for these clients. Using best practices, we hope to bring all our known therapeutic interventions to bear on this devastating disability.
Colorado State University is investing in a "Temple Grandin Research Center" to study the effects of equine interactions on people who live with disabilities. Long term impact is only limited by the size of the equine programs available to this population. Efforts to increase the independence of children born with this disorder can directly impact the cost to society for in-school supports, and adult long term care.