The diagnosis is usually an insurance requirement to qualify for ABA therapy coverage.
This typically includes having a licensed psychologist, pediatrician, neurologist, or other professional provide an official diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder or related diagnoses in which ABA is a recommended treatment.
In Illinois, potential diagnosing services in the area include: Hopemark Health, Advocate Health, and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Childrenâ€™s Hospital of Chicago.
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy enhances the lives of individuals with autism by fostering behaviors like social interaction, communication, and adaptive learning skills.
Its effectiveness lies in individualized treatment plans, evidence-based methods, and continuous monitoring for real-time adjustments.
Numerous studies have demonstrated positive outcomes, including improved cognitive scores, school performance, and reduced reliance on special services, although results can vary based on individual and therapy-related factors.
A child’s therapy team is a group of professionals aimed at meeting the child’s specific therapeutic needs. Your team includes Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA), Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs), and administrative staff.
Parents are an integral part of this team, with open communication maintained among team members to track the child’s progress.
While both roles work to improve behavior, an ABA therapist explicitly uses the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis to encourage positive behaviors and reduce unwanted ones. Behavior therapists may use a variety of methods, not strictly ABA.
Early intervention is generally recommended for the most effective outcomes. However, ABA therapy can be beneficial at any age and can be started whenever a need is identified.
Starting Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy for your child begins with a session with a licensed psychologist, pediatrician, neurologist, or other professional who can provide an official diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder or related diagnoses in which ABA is a recommended treatment.
Next you will need to find a center that is in network with your insurance provider and schedule an initial appointment with them. The team at the center will guide you through the authorization and will develop a treatment plan to address your childâ€™s current needs.
The number of hours depends on the childâ€™s unique needs. Generally, children receive between 10 to 40 hours of therapy per week.
This can change based on your childâ€™s age, their specific challenges, and the goals they are working towards. Younger kids or those with more significant challenges might need more hours, while older kids or those with smaller challenges might need fewer.
We offer therapy to children as early as 18-months-old to 21-years-old to help build core abilities in daily life, communication, and socialization.
We understand that balancing therapy with other responsibilities can be challenging. We offer flexible scheduling options, including after-school hours, to accommodate your childâ€™s needs.
Yes, your child will have a dedicated team of RBTs and a BCBA to ensure consistency and build a strong, trusting therapeutic relationship.Â
ABA therapy is based on the science of learning and behavior and is frequently used to support individuals with autism.
This approach uses the reinforcement of behavior to help children acquire or improve skills such as socialization, communication, and independence.
Earlier intervention can help promote independence and reduce the potential need for further assistance in the future.
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy can complement and amplify the impact of speech and occupational therapy. Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is a treatment that targets specific behaviors, such as those involved in social interaction, communication, and academic performance.
It uses a system of rewards and consequences to encourage positive behavior changes. When combined with speech therapy, which directly targets a childâ€™s ability to communicate, or occupational therapy, which works on fine motor skills and daily living activities, ABA therapy can reinforce the skills learned in these sessions.
ABA therapy can play a crucial role in helping your child develop speech and communication skills.
ABA therapyâ€™s systematic and individualized approach can help children with autism and other developmental disorders learn to communicate through verbal speech, sign language, or a communication device.
Therapists can use various strategies, such as verbal prompts, modeling, and reinforcement, to teach and encourage communication skills. However, predicting whether your child will eventually be able to talk depends on many factors and needs to be addressed on a case-by-case basis.
ABA services can improve your childâ€™s social interaction skills by providing systematic and targeted interventions. It will start with interactions with RBTs and BCBAs in individual sessions and continue in small groups.
In small groups we focus on teaching activities useful in a variety of social situations, helping our clients prepare for school, play dates, and other events.
In Illinois, certain health insurers are required by law to provide coverage for diagnosing and treating autism spectrum disorders for individuals under 21 years of age, up to a maximum benefit of $36,000 per year, with no limit on service provider visits.
The coverage varies greatly, so we recommend contacting your insurance provider for specific information.
Most insurance plans have coinsurance or copayments before out of pocked maximum is reached. In addition, we might recommend specific materials or activities the child would benefit from outside of the sessions, but those are not mandatory.
The Illinois state laws related to autism encompass a few different areas:
Autism Insurance Reform: The Illinois autism insurance bill, Public Law 095-1005, became effective on December 12, 2008. The services covered by this law include diagnosis, psychiatric care, psychological care, habilitative or rehabilitative care (Applied Behavior Analysis), and therapeutic care (behavioral, speech, occupational, and physical therapy).
Caps or Restrictions on ABA Coverage: There are certain restrictions on Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) coverage in Illinois. The law limits coverage to individuals with autism under the age of 21 years. Coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of autism is subject to a maximum annual benefit of approximately $50,000 for individual grandfathered plans.
Medicaid: Illinois’s Medicaid program, known as the Application for Benefits Eligibility (ABE), provides fee-for-service and is also administered by Managed Care Organizations (MCOs).
State Mental Health Parity: Illinois has a mental health parity law, found in the Illinois state statute 215 ILCS 5/370c.
General Standards of Care: The state has general standards of care for autism, included in HB2595, passed in August 2021.
Illinois Department of Insurance: The Illinois Department of Insurance has issued bulletins related to autism care, including Bulletin 2020-04, published on March 25, 2020, which allowed for services to be provided via telehealth during the COVID-19 emergency.
Illinois has a specific autism mandate, which requires particular insurers to provide coverage for autism spectrum disorder for individuals under 21.
This includes coverage for diagnosis, treatment (including ABA therapy), psychiatric care, psychological care, habilitative or rehabilitative care, and therapeutic care.
Chicago Autism Network: This 501(c)3 nonprofit organization is dedicated to helping locals find and afford effective autism therapy & supports.
Mailing Address: P.O. BOX 804914, Chicago, IL 60680
Chicagoland Autism Connection (CAC): CAC is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to educate more people about autism and work to enhance the lives and families of those living with the disorder. They provide support to families from the point of diagnosis and offer a range of activities and resources to support families affected by autism. They also have two divisions – the Chicago Southside Autism Support Group (CSASG) and the “A” Team Social and Recreational Club.
Address: 9449 S. Kedzie Ave., #716, Evergreen Park, IL 60805
The Autism Program of Illinois (TAP): TAP is a collaboration of 5 universities and ten organizations that operate 20 centers across the state. They provide services to children, families, educators, childcare providers, and medical professionals, aiming to develop, utilize, and share best and promising practices.
Little Friends Center for Autism: The center strives to provide a fulfilling life for those they serve through comprehensive therapy services and evidence-based treatment strategies while serving as a resource and helping hand for families.
Address: 27555 Diehl Road, Warrenville, IL 60555.
The Autism Society of Illinois is a nonprofit that aims to improve the quality of life for those with autism and their families. It works towards this goal through local, state, and national advocacy, striving to shape policies that offer equal opportunities and fight discrimination.
The organization also focuses on education, providing resources to help individuals, professionals, and the public understand autism better. In addition, it offers information about diagnosis, treatment, and local services to families and professionals.
The Autism Society of Illinois provides support by connecting families with resources, offering emotional guidance, and organizing support groups.
Yes, several schools in Illinois specialize in educating students with autism or other developmental or learning disabilities. These schools offer specialized programs and supports to help students thrive academically and socially.
Soaring Eagle Academy: This schoolprovides a unique educational environment for students with disorders in relating and communication, serving students aged 5 to 14 with Autism and related disorders.
Krejci Academy: Krejci Academy offers educational programs for students aged 3 to 21 with autism or other emotional, behavioral, or developmental disabilities.
Address: 619 East Franklin Avenue, Naperville, Illinois, 60540
The Cove School: The Cove School serves children with complex learning disabilities from Kindergarten through 12th grade.
Address: 350 Lee Road, Northbrook, IL 60062
Sonia Shankman Orthogenic School: This is a top-ranked special education private school in Illinois that provides services for students with various special needs, including autism.
Address: 6245 S. Ingleside Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637
Hyde Park Day School – Chicago Campus: This is another top-ranked special education private school in Illinois. Hyde Park Day School offers programs for students with learning disabilities, including autism.
Address: 6254 S. Ellis Ave., Chicago, IL 60637