(20 ILCS 1705/57) (from Ch. 91 1/2, par. 100-57)
    Sec. 57. The Department of Human Services shall periodically convene a special task force of representatives of the various State agencies with related programs and services together with other interested parties and stakeholders to study and assess service needs of persons with autism. The Secretary of Human Services shall submit a report of the task force's findings and recommendations and the Secretary's priorities to the Governor and the General Assembly by September 1, 2005. The Secretary shall provide annual progress reports to the Governor and the General Assembly by January 1 of each year, beginning on January 1, 2006. The reports shall include an analysis of progress made in the following areas:
    a. Early intervention services for children with autism and their parents;
    b. Enhancement of family support mechanisms to enable persons with autism to remain in a home-based or community environment in the least-restrictive setting possible, including progress on the implementation of plans to provide assistance to individuals and families; the plan shall include, but not be limited to, (i) identification of the services required, (ii) the availability of services, especially those within the home community of the person with autism, (iii) the number of persons requiring the services, (iv) the cost of the services, (v) the capacity of the person with autism and his or her family to independently provide the services and the extent to which the State may support the individual and family effort, (vi) the extent of existing and planned State support, (vii) the availability and utilization of federal financial participation in the cost of services, and (viii) the outcomes and impact of services being provided;
    c. Services for adequate transition for people with autism from public school programs to adult work and day programs; and
    d. Plans, programs, and services under the Disabilities Services Act of 2003.
    The Department of Human Services and the Department of Healthcare and Family Services shall determine the availability of federal financial participation in the cost of developing a family support program, which would include medical assistance coverage for children diagnosed with autism who would otherwise qualify for medical assistance under the Illinois Public Aid Code except for family income. The program would include services to support persons with autism in their homes and communities that are not provided through local school systems, early intervention programs, or the medical assistance program under the Illinois Public Aid Code. The departments shall determine the feasibility of obtaining federal financial participation and may apply for any applicable waiver under Section 1915(c) of the federal Social Security Act.
    For the purpose of this service needs review, autism means a severely incapacitating life-long developmental disability which:
    a. may be manifested before a person is 30 months of age,
    b. may be caused by physical disorders of the brain, and
    c. is characterized by uneven intellectual development and a combination of disturbances in the rates and sequences of cognitive, affective, psychomotor, language and speech development. This syndrome is further evidenced by abnormal responses to sensory stimuli, problems in developing social relationships, and ritualistic and compulsive behavior.
(Source: P.A. 95-331, eff. 8-21-07.)