Cost comparison of early intensive behavioral intervention and treatment as usual for children with autism spectrum disorder in The Netherlands

Res Dev Disabil. Nov-Dec 2012;33(6):1763-72. doi: 10.1016/j.ridd.2012.04.006. Epub 2012 Jun 14.


Early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) may result in improved cognitive, adaptive and social functioning and reductions in autism severity and behavioral problems in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). For a subset of children, normal functioning may be the result. However, due to the intensity (20-40 h per week for 3 years with a low child staff ratio) implementation costs are high and can be controversial. Estimated costs for education, (supported) work and (sheltered) living for individuals with ASD in The Netherlands are applied in a cost-offset model. A compelling argument for the provision of EIBI is long term savings which are approximately € 1,103,067 from age 3 to 65 years per individual with ASD. Extending these costs to the whole Dutch ASD population, cost savings of € 109.2-€ 182 billion have been estimated, excluding costs associated with inflation.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Behavior Therapy / economics*
  • Behavior Therapy / methods*
  • Child
  • Child Behavior Disorders / economics
  • Child Behavior Disorders / therapy
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / economics*
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / therapy*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Early Intervention, Educational / economics*
  • Early Intervention, Educational / methods*
  • Education, Special / economics
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Netherlands
  • Outcome and Process Assessment, Health Care
  • Young Adult