For children who have a confirmed autism spectrum diagnosis (including previous diagnosis of Asperger Syndrome or PDD-NOS), we currently accept Aetna, Beacon Health Options, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Cigna/Evernorth, MBHP, Optum, Tufts Commercial and Tufts Public, and United Behavioral Health. We are also able to bill as an Out of Network provider for other insurances. We would be glad to help check your benefits if you need assistance finding out your insurance coverage.
Please check back if you have other insurance; additional health insurances are added ongoing.
Based on the initial consultation the BCBA/LABA clinician will determine behavioral targets specific to each individual client. We use a coaching/modeling, practice, and feedback approach with the groups following the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis. Some of the skills we might select to target are:
The first step is to call or email to receive an application. The application provides us with basic information about you or your child’s needs, your concerns, and behavioral history.
Return the completed application by mail or scan and send by email. For those seeking insurance coverage we will contact the specialist who provided an autism diagnosis in order to gain a medical necessity letter, and then we will contact your insurance company to receive preauthorization for ABA services.
Once you or your child are authorized for services, we will contact you to schedule an initial intake appointment in the office, and determine appropriate placement in a social group or individual services as needed. The initial intake appointment is about 90 minutes long and involves a parent/guardian interview and a child interview.
· The BCBA/LABA clinician conducts the initial evaluation to determine client needs. Once this evaluation is completed you or your child may be placed in a social coaching group run by a behavior therapist working under the supervision of the BCBA/LABA. The BCBA/LABA may also run certain social coaching groups.
Group sessions are an hour long and typically meet once a week. Groups range from 2-4 participants depending on the needs of the clients. We do our best to find an appropriate group match for clients, and may put you or your child on a wait list to start a new group if needed. For children and teen groups we offer parent training sessions immediately after the group session.
Individual sessions are designed for more direct services and for those who are not comfortable working in a group setting. As with group services individual clients complete the initial evaluation with a BCBA/LABA. Individual sessions are one to two hours in duration depending on the needs to the client. Parent training sessions are also a part of your child’s services.
Home-based services are available on a limited basis for those who require direct teaching to develop more functional behaviors in the home. The duration and frequency of home-based services depend on the level of services needed for the client. Please call our office to determine availability if you are seeking home-based services.
Applied Behavior Analysis is a research-based behavioral intervention involving the “design, implementation and evaluation of environmental modifications, using behavioral stimuli and consequences, to produce socially significant improvement in human behavior...”
(Geller, 1972; Lovaas, 1987; Smith et al, 2000; Butler et al., 2003; Shea, 2004)
ABA is a research-based treatment used to create socially significant improvement in human behavior. Strategies capitalize on a person's strengths and develop replacement behaviors for weaker skills through modeling/coaching, direct teaching, practice, and reinforcement. Behavior therapists break down a new task into manageable chunks that can be mastered and built upon. They also change the environmental “triggers” for a behavior as well as the consequences/outcomes of problem behaviors to help clients build new behavioral “toolboxes”. ABA is not counseling or “talk therapy”; ABA relies on behavioral research for effective treatment.
BCBA stands for Board Certified Behavior Analyst. This is the clinician who evaluates the behavioral needs of a client, determines socially relevant goals to work towards, and designs the strategies (behavior plans) to shape more appropriate behaviors, teach replacement behaviors and skills, and reduce problem behaviors.
LABA is a Licensed Applied Behavior Analyst; Massachusetts has recently joined a large number of other states in allowing BCBA’s to now become licensed practioners, continuing to follow the principles of applied behavior analysis and ethical standards within the allied mental health field. All BCBA’s actively practicing in Massachusetts are expected to convert to Licensed Applied Behavior Analysts by December 2017 at the latest.
Clients with social anxiety but no additional diagnosis may access services with Horizons Social Coaching with self-payment for services as most insurances will only reimburse ABA providers for children with an autism diagnosis. However, ABA is a very effective treatment for a wide variety of developmental needs; contact your insurance provider if your child has another diagnosis (such as social communication disorder, ODD, or ADHD) to determine if they allow for ABA services for that particular diagnosis.
Find our most frequently asked questions below. If your specific question is not addressed please, contact us and we'll be happy to help!