Purchase Equipment or Supplies

5 step process to getting equipment approved and paid for

Allocate up to 20% of your autism funding to assist with the cost of purchasing equipment and supplies, training, or travel to support your child's therapy goals.


Talk about your equipment needs with your service provider. They know what's best for your child and their plan for therapy.

If you don’t have a service provider, work with your school therapist or a paediatrician. You can also contact Autism Information Services for help: AutismInformation@gov.bc.ca | Toll free: 1 844 878-4700.

Complete the Justification for Equipment (JFE) and Supplies Form (PDF) with your service provider. Be sure that they include:

  • A description of the item
  • Estimated cost
  • Domain – where and how the item will be used
    Tip: Items for school use are not approved
  • Goal – how the item will help your child
    Tip: We need a detailed goal for each item, be specific!

For children under 6, the JFE form can be completed by:

  • Professionals listed on the Registry of Autism Service Providers (RASP)
  • Early Intervention Therapy professionals employed through MCFD-contracted agencies, organizations, or health authorities
    • Speech-language pathologist
    • Occupational therapist
    • Physical therapist

For children over 6, the JFE form can be completed by the following professionals:

  • Behaviour consultant
  • Physical therapist 
  • Speech-language pathologist 
  • Occupational therapist 
  • Registered psychologist 
  • Registered psychological associate 
  • Psychiatrist 
  • Paediatrician 
  • Neurologist 

Submit your completed form for approval.

The fastest way to submit the form is through My Family Services. You can also send the form by email, mail or fax. This option can take up to 30 business days.

The Autism Funding team will review your child's equipment needs and therapy goals on the form. Do not purchase items until you receive approval.


Here are some tips to help get your request for funding approved.

Download a print version of Getting Approval for Autism Equipment (PDF, 246KB)


Items need to:

  • Help your child reach their development goals – describe how or why a specific item will assist your child's skill development
  • Be appropriate to your child's age or skill level

Electronic devices:

  • One laptop or desktop computer or touch screen tablet (e.g. iPad, iTouch, smart phone) every three years
  • Assisted communication tools for non-verbal children can be replaced more often
  • Monthly phone bills or data plans are not included

Books:

  • Must be appropriate to the age or skill-level of your child – indicate the reading level of your child

Weighted blankets:

  • Have an occupational therapist or physiotherapist sign your justification form

Number of items:

  • Request more than one item for small items like office, art or craft supplies (e.g. pencil grips, play dough, lego, paper, etc.)
  • Request only one item for larger items or equipment, unless multiples are required according to your child's goals

Items that do not qualify for funding:

  • Home repairs or renovations
  • Swimming pools or hot tubs
  • Trampolines or playground equipment
  • Sport or fitness equipment
  • Household items, including appliances
  • General recreation and sports enrollment fees
  • Televisions
  • Vitamins, medical supplies, orthotics
  • Clothing (except for compression clothing or squirrel suits)
  • Food (however, small reinforcers for therapy maybe eligible)
  • Any items to be used only in school settings
  • Monthly smart phone bills and/or data plans
  • Anything that would be considered a typical expense for a child of your child's age (e.g. a high chair for a two year-old is not likely to be approved because all two year-olds require a high chair)
  • Anything that's already provided by other programs or agencies (e.g. SET-BC, the At Home Program)

There may be exceptions. Some items that are on this list may be approved if they will support your child's development goals. Talk to your service provider about how to explain why these items are needed.

It's best to keep material and equipment purchases separate from household items. This makes it easier to process receipts and you will receive reimbursement faster.

Within six months of purchase, complete the Reimbursement of Autism Expenses Form (PDF) and attach a copy of your receipt. 

Make sure the receipt shows:

  • The date the item was purchased
  • Where the purchase was made
  • The amount (including taxes)
  • Proof of payment (e.g. credit card, cash, PayPal, etc.)

Shipping receipts, common from online retailers like Amazon, are not accepted.

The fastest way to submit the form and receipt is through My Family ServicesYou can also submit by email, mail or fax. This option can take up to 30 business days. 

The Autism Funding team will compare your approved JFE form on file with the items you purchased.


If you have a concern about the service provided by the Autism Funding team, or about an autism funding decision, contact the Autism Funding team at 1 877 777-3530. If your complaint is not resolved, request to speak with an Autism Funding supervisor.