Friday, September 21, 2012

FREE Workshop “Autism and Health Insurance: Making Your Benefits Work for Your Child.”

Confused About the Autism Health Insurance Law? Find out how to tell if your insurance policy is covered under this new law, what can you expect, steps you should take and more!

Free for parents, childcare will be provided at the facility for $18. Children can bounce the night away while parents and professionals can hear the information on the new Autism Health Insurance Law (SB946). Children will be able to use all the facilities under supervision.  

You must RSVP to reserve your spot!

Presented by Behavior Frontiers Founder & Executive Director, Helen Mader, M.A., B.C.B.A.
WHEN: Monday, Oct 8th 6-8 pm
WHERE: Sky High Sports, 3230 Cornerstone Dr, Mira Loma
For more info or to RSVP:
Autism Society Inland Empire
(951) 220-6922

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Legal Opinion Finds CA Regional Centers Can Pay Copays

The Association of Regional Center Agencies (ARCA) requested a legal opinion from the law firm, Enright and Ocheltree, LLP, in order to determine whether regional centers can pay the co-pays for services otherwise covered by insurance. The legal option authored on June 11, 2012, finds that requiring copayments from families who have insurance violates the Lanterman Act, which governs the regional centers. In addition, this legal opinion found that hardship and financial need of the family are not relevant, since there is no copay requirement in the law pertaining to insurance. This means that families who are able to secure insurance funding for applied behavior analysis (ABA) services for their child with autism can contact their regional center to request reimbursement for copayments. Families can provide their regional center service coordinator with the following legal opinion to support their request: ARCADecision

Monday, July 2, 2012

California Law Requires Health Insurance to Cover Autism Treatment

As of July 1, 2012, California law SB946 requires health insurance plans to cover applied behavior
analysis (ABA) for patients who have pervasive developmental disorder or autism. The law also requires insurance companies to maintain an adequate network of ABA providers so that children with autism will have access to this necessary care. Under this new law, either Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) or licensed clinicians with appropriate experience are allowed to design and supervise ABA programs. Furthermore, the law allows professionals and paraprofessionals to implement the behavioral treatment plan under the supervision of the BCBA or licensed clinician.

Here is a list of steps you can use to get insurance coverage for your child with autism:

1. Find Out if Your Insurance Plan Must Follow the New Law
First, find out if your insurance plan is mandated to follow this new law. Plans that are exempt
from following this new law are self-funded plans, out-of-state plans, Healthy Families plans,
and Medi-Cal plans. However, some self-funded plans (e.g., Microsoft, Deloitte, etc.) offer ABA
treatment for autism as a benefit for their employees. Therefore, you should check with your
human resources representative to find out. Also, if you only have a Healthy Families or Medi-
Cal plan, you may contact your local California regional center about funding.

2. Get a Diagnosis
In order to receive insurance funded ABA services, your child will need to have a qualifying
diagnosis. The law states that patient’s with pervasive developmental disorder (PDD) or autism
qualify for behavioral health treatment. PDD includes Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Disorder,
Rett’s Disorder, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, and PDD-NOS. Therefore, if your child does
not have a formal diagnosis, you will need to bring your child to a licensed clinician who can
conduct a diagnostic assessment and provide you formal diagnosis in a written report.

3. Get a Prescription for ABA
The next step in getting insurance coverage for your child with autism spectrum disorder is
to get a prescription for ABA from your child’s physician or licensed psychologist. You will
likely need to give a copy of your child’s diagnostic report your child’s physician or licensed
psychologist so that he/she is aware that your child qualifies for this medically necessary

4. Verify Benefits
Then, you will need to verify the benefits offered by your child’s health insurance plan. This
can be done by submitting your child’s prescription to your health insurance plan and then
contacting their autism team or their general customer service center to find out if your child’s
plan covers ABA. You can also ask an ABA treatment provider to verify your child’s benefits for
you, which they can do if you provide them with your child’s health information. For example,
Behavior Frontiers is an ABA provider that offers a secure, online parent portal, which
families can use to submit their child’s medical information. Behavior Frontiers will provide you
with an explanation of your child’s ABA benefits, including information on your co-payments, co-
insurance, deductibles, caps, etc.

5. Select an ABA Provider
Once you know your child has ABA benefits then ask your health insurance company for a
directory of in-network ABA Providers who can provide the necessary ABA services for your
child. You can call and interview the ABA providers listed until you find one that fits your child’s
needs. Remember, in most cases, ABA services are delivered in your child’s home or community
so the location of the ABA provider may not be a very important. If your child already has an
ABA provider, then you will need to find-out if they are in-network with your child’s health
insurance plan. You may need to request that your ABA provider join the network if they have
not yet done so. In some cases, such as when there is not an in-network provider within 30 miles
of your home, then you may be able to use an out-of-network provider.

6. Have Provider Conduct an Assessment & Design the Treatment Plan
If you are beginning ABA services for the first time, your ABA provider will need to assess
your child in order to design a treatment plan. This assessment may include reviewing past
reports, interviewing caregivers, observing your child, and/or testing your child’s skills. If your
child has an existing ABA provider, they may be able to use current assessment information to
design your child’s treatment plan. The treatment plan should describe your child’s behavioral
health impairments and should include measurable goals, evidence-based interventions, and
recommendations for service type, number of hours, and parent participation. Your provider
may or may not have to get preauthorization to conduct the assessment, depending upon the
requirements of your child’s plan.

7. Get Preauthorization for Treatment
Depending on the policies of your child’s health plan, your ABA provider may have to submit a
variety of documents to the health insurance company to get pre-authorization for treatment to
begin. For example, you may need to give your provider copies of your child’s diagnostic report,
functional behavior assessment, standardized tests, IEP report, IFSP report, ABA treatment plan,
and progress reports from prior ABA treatment to include in the submission. Your ABA provider
will submit requested documents to the health plan in order to get treatment authorization.

8. Begin Services!
Once your ABA provider receives written pre-authorization from the health insurance plan then
treatment may begin. You will likely have a meeting with your child’s assigned ABA supervisor
to review and consent to the treatment plan and other policies. Once paperwork has been
completed, then your child’s supervisor will likely bring a treatment plan data collection binder
to your home and start training the professional and paraprofessional staff how to accurately
implement your child’s treatment plan.

We hope this list will help you to make your way efficiently through the process in order to get your
child insurance funding for behavioral health treatment. Please visit Behavior Frontiers website to see the insurance companies that we are in-network with at this time and to find a location near you.

Behavior Frontiers is dedicated to helping families successfully navigate the process to created by the
new California health insurance mandate for autism!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Event Wrap Up - Dallas Area Events

Behavior Frontiers in Dallas was really excited to participate in the 3rd Annual “Teaching Does Make a Difference” Autism Conference in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas.  It was held on February 27-29 held by Families for Effective Autism Treatment - North Texas (FEAT-NT). Grace Gomez, Clinical Director in Dallas, did two workshops about using reinforcement strategies. Families were able to attend three days of training and over 40 presentations!!

Frisco Fun Run (5/19/12) was able to raise money for families needing financial aid to pay for much needed therapies. Behavior Frontiers were happy to participate in helping families.

Live the Dream Expo, Irving (5/19/12) was able to offer free information to families who have children with special needs. We were happy to help the local school districts by empowering families with free information and resources.

Walk, Roll, Stroll (6/16/12) raised thousands of dollars for Ability Connections Texas. ACT offers individuals with all disabilities free supports and services. We were glad to participate in the fundraiser despite the very hot weather!

Stephanie’s Day (6/16/12), now in its 8th year in Dallas, was a huge success! It was a fun-filled day of information and resources for families of children with special needs.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Family Fun Run & Living The Dream Expo

Behavior Frontiers is proud to sponsor and provide activities to both of these events this Saturday, May 19th! Please stop by to say hello.

The 5th Annual Prosperity Place Fun Run & Family Festival - Frisco Square, Frisco, Texas from 8-11:30 am. This race benefits Prosperity Place, a non-profit organization helping children with special needs. To register click here!

We will also be at the “Live the Dream” EXPO West - May 19, 2012 at Ranchview High School in Irving, 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

This is for families with school-aged children with intellectual or developmental disabilities. The EXPOs are free to the public and offer information, expertise, assistance and services from area service providers. Organized by The Arc, Region 10 Education Service Center and 16 suburban independent school districts, the EXPOs include information tables, workshops and fun activities for the whole family. For more info click here!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Behavior Frontiers Attending ABAI May 25-28

behavior frontiers at ABAI
Behavior Frontiers will be attending the 38th Annual Convention in Seattle, Washington, May 25–29, 2012, at the Washington State Convention Center. This year's convention includes content from 1,166 submissions, including 466 posters, 256 panels and symposia, 77 papers, 38 invited addresses, 7 invited tutorials, 57 business meetings, 17 reunions, 23 special events, 133 Expo posters, and 92 workshops. There are abundant opportunities to learn and share about the science, practice, education, and professional issues in behavior analysis and we will be on hand to demonstrate our unique ABA training center and programs.

Our executive director, Helen Mader, will be presenting at the following workshops:

# 6 Workshop Increasing Appropriate Behaviors of Children With Autism—Part 1 in a Series
# 61 Workshop Decreasing Problem Behaviors of Children with Autism—Part 2 in a Series
# 11 Paper Session Pricing 101: What rates should behavior analysts charge?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Autism Walk Los Angeles

We were so happy to participate in the 10th annual Walk Now for Autism Speaks - our team enjoyed a full day visiting with the families and organizations who turned out to support this important fundraiser.

Monday, April 2, 2012

World Autism Awareness Day

Light It Up Blue is a unique global initiative to help raise awareness about the growing public health concern that is autism.  Iconic landmarks such as the Empire State building, Great Buddha (Japan), The CN Tower (Toronto), Rockefeller Center, the Sydney Opera House and others will Light It Up Blue to show their support on April 2, 2012 - World Autism Awareness Day. What will you do to show your support?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Top Toys for Young Children with Autism

Toys are one of the significant tools in aiding your child's development. Surrounding your child with the right toys may provide opportunities to improve your child’s communication, social skills, motor skills, and cognition, to name a few. Here is a list of toys that may assist in targeting these skills for young children with autism. These items are both visually appealing and great for social and independent play. Keep in mind that in order to reap the most benefits from these toys, your interaction through building conversations, modeling play, and giving necessary prompts will play a significant role.

1.     Peg Puzzles - Basic peg puzzles are great for improving your child’s cognitive skills, hand-eye coordination, and definitely fine motor skills. Putting these puzzles together may teach your child to match and improve visual-spatial orientation. Also, since they come in different themes (e.g., alphabet, numbers, shapes, animals, etc.), your child may also get a head start in learning about categories.

2.     Wooden Geometric Stacker - Help your child learn how to recognize and differentiate between shapes, colors, and sizes. Enhance your child’s problem solving skills as s/he stacks pieces that vary in size. When you interact with your child, this toy may aid in teaching object attributes and basic receptive skills.

3.     Modeling Clays - Nothing disguises fine motor skills tasks as well as playing with these malleable products. Rolling, pinching, smashing, and using the standard plastic tools for these items are good exercises for various parts of the hands. You could make these motions even more functional and fun by creating items with details (e.g., a long snake with eyeballs, a layered birthday cake with small rolled up candles, etc.). Please note that some common brands contain wheat, so please read ingredients carefully.

4.     Basic Skills Boards - A puzzle board that doubles as a dressing-up game is a perfect way to introduce this important self-help skill. These types of boards can contain buttons, laces, buckles, and a zipper—perfect for teaching your child how to manipulate these items while improving fine motor skills.

5.     Bean Bag Toss Games - Visual orientation, gross motor skills, and hand-eye coordination are some of the skills that are targeted as your child aims and throws.

6.     Kitchen Play Sets - Playing with a kitchen set provides plenty of opportunities to enhance socio-dramatic play, functional pretend play, parallel play, and language. Your child could imitate real-life actions of cooking and serving food while learning to label food and household items and their functions. Teaching language including verbs and attributes could also be easily done while you model play to your child.

7.     Animal Play Sets – These toys present an amusing way of introducing different animals. Your child may learn general knowledge about animals as s/he associates them with their habitats and the bonus matching sounds included in this toy. Creative play, fine motor, and language are some of the skills that could be targeted as your child maneuvers and manipulates the actions of the animals in different ways.

Monday, January 30, 2012

“Teaching Does Make a Difference” Autism Conference

The 2012 Annual FEAT-NT Autism Conference "Teaching Does Make a Difference” will be held on February 27, 28 and 29, 2012 at Northwood Church in Keller, Texas.  For over 15 years, FEAT-NT has been dedicated to serving educators, parents, professionals and individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and developmental delays. In the spirit of our commitment we are honored to present a conference with a diverse array of professionals with valuable years of experience to share. Recognizing
that each teaching opportunity impacts an individual’s quality of life and a lifetime of skills and
success, these professionals have implemented and refined evidence based teaching strategies
that have been proven to be successful.

Grace Gomez, the Behavior Frontiers Dallas office Clinical Director will be a guest speaker at the event. More information on the 3-day event, click here

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

FRED Conference 2012

Farms & Ranches Enabling People with Disabilities (FRED) is holding its first conference to create a coalition of professionals and family members involved in special needs farms and ranches. This event takes place on March 3, 2012 in Manhattan Beach, CA. Find out more about this innovative event at

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Special Offer for App Store Gift Card

Now through December 31st, 2011, new registered participants will receive an iTunes App Store gift card compliments of Behavior Frontiers. Receive a $15 gift card for a family package or a $25 gift card for a professional package.    

Find the right ABA Online Training Package here.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Now parents and professionals who are registered for Behavior Frontiers Online ABA Training can download, pre-fill and print helpful data sheets to use during behavior intervention programs for children with autism. Find a list of all of the data sheets at Behavior Frontiers Training Center. Our online training program is designed to provide you with all the ABA methods needed to work effectively with children with autism and other special needs. Our participant manual, downloadable forms & video access for up to one year from registration are all just part of our unique training packages now available in easy payment options. For more information, visit our Behavior Frontiers Online Training Center.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

CalABA Meeting 11/16 in Santa Monica

The CalABA Insurance Work Group is hosting a regional meeting to disseminate the latest information on ABA coverage by health insurance companies.

Come talk about the insurance, legislation and CalABA's goals for its members. Talk about how things look from your point of view. 

This meeting should be a priority for all behavior analysts. 

When: November 16th, from 5:45 - 7 pm
Where: Ken Edwards Center, 1527 4th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401
RSVP via email to Daniel Shabani by Monday, November 7th.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Santa Monica Disabilities Commission Poster Contest

Calling all kids in grades K - 12 in Santa Monica, CA... It's poster contest time!

Universally accessible playgrounds are places where children of all abilities can play side by side. They even make it possible for parents with disabilities and seniors to participate.

What does this mean to you?


Who would play there? What would it look like? What would be in it?

Winning posters will be displayed at City Hall and the site of the new universally accessible playground during construction.

Entry deadline: October 21, 2011
Contest Flyer - English (pdf)
Contest Flyer - Spanish (pdf)

For more information on universally accessible playgrounds, please visit

Questions about the contest? Contact Stacy Rowe at 310-458-8644 or

Thursday, September 29, 2011

New Updates in Our Los Angeles Office

We are pleased to announce some wonderful staffing updates within Behavior Frontiers!

First, Kelly Kratzer has been promoted to Clinical Director of our Los Angeles office. She will be working with our behavior supervisors and case managers to oversee the behavior intervention programs for all of the clients based out of our Los Angeles office.

Also, Christine Russ has been promoted to Scheduling Coordinator. She will continue to schedule cases on the Westside, as well as working with our schedulers to oversee the schedules for all of the clients based out of our Los Angeles office.

Furthermore, please welcome a new addition to our staff, Hilda Franco, who has been hired as another scheduler! She will transition into the role of scheduling clients located in the South Bay Area of our Los Angeles office.

We are excited to have these individuals supporting the Behavior Frontiers team in new ways and we look forward to the improvements that will come with their input and knowledge.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Back To School Tips for Children with Autism

  1. Go shopping! Involve your child in back to school shopping as much as possible. While it is important that the parent maintain control of the price ranges and items purchased, allowing your child to have a reasonable amount of say (e.g., choosing the Power Rangers pencil box instead of the Sponge Bob one) in any school supplies and clothes can help to make him/her more excited to use the new things and in turn more excited about the upcoming school year. You can maximize the effectiveness of this strategy by having your child wait until school starts to wear new school clothes or use the new school supplies. That is, of course, unless your child typically needs time to grow accustomed to new things, in which case you can use the days prior to school starting to have “practice” school days where you can expose your child to his/her new things.
  2. Write a personalized social story. Write a story preparing your child for the upcoming school year. Take into consideration what things will remain the same – these things will be comforting to children for whom change creates anxiety. Also, be sure to explain any changes that will come with the beginning of the school year – if your child is changing schools, teacher, aides (or anything that you feel may be troubling to your child), take this opportunity to prepare him/her. See if you can get pictures of the new things that will be in your child’s environment and do your best to describe them in language that your child will understand. If you aren’t able to get actual pictures, try to find pictures on the internet or use clip art. Read the story to your child daily as the first day of school draws near. Not sure how to start? Use this template as a start, but be sure to personalize it to your child’s situation and needs. [PAGE 1 & PAGE 2]
  3. Count down! Get a calendar for your child and highlight the first day of school. When there is a week or two before school is to begin, show your child the calendar as you mark off the current day and explain how many days remain before the first day of school. Use this time to address any fears about the upcoming school year and get a feel for your child’s comfort level with going back to school. This is also a great time to read your social story! On at least one of these days, it may be a good idea to take your child to the school and just play on the playground, if that’s possible, especially if your child will be attending a new school. Remind your child how much fun he/she will soon get to have every day!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

What is Autism? Do You Know the Signs?

Autism is a spectrum disorder which includes a large range of symptoms and behaviors. This video features children showing signs of autism.

This video is part of our ABA Online Training Center for parents and professionals. To find out about our online training and seminars, visit:

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

New Resource Web Site Serving Southern California

From the Law Offices of Jeffrey A. Gottlieb, is a classifieds and directory to help parents locate resources for their special children. Categories range from attorneys, non-profit advocacy organizations to IEP support and autism therapy services.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

ABA Training for Parents & Professionals

Behavior Frontiers, a nonpublic agency offering solutions to help children with autism and other special needs using state-of-the-art applied behavior analysis (ABA) services, has launched an innovative ABA training program for parents and professionals. Available in two formats, the training program can be completed in person at a seminar led by a Behavior Frontiers Specialist or through the Online Training Center. 

ABA treatment focuses on applying behavior methods to help improve the behaviors, as well as the overall quality of life, of children with autism and other special needs. It involves rewarding children for appropriate behavior and not rewarding their problem behaviors. Parents, teachers, classroom aides, therapists, and others can now use Behavior Frontiers training program to learn how to use these practical ABA methods to help change their child’s life for the better. 

Participants attending a live seminar will learn ABA methods under the guidance of Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) in a 2-day intensive training environment. Live seminars will be available is most major cities by the end of 2011. The seminar includes over one hundred professionally produced video demonstrations of instructors using techniques with students, as well as role-play and discussion activities. 

The online training is a total of 4 ½ hours of video-based instruction, which can be taken at the participants’ own pace. The online training includes all the videos from the training seminar in order to give participants the information they need to learn about ABA methods to effectively help students with autism and other special needs. 

Participants who register as “Behavior Analyst” or “Professional” may access an online exam after they have finished their training seminar or online training. Once these participants successfully pass the exam, they will become Certified Behavior Instructors for Autism – Level 1 and may be listed on Behavior Frontiers online registry for one year. 

“ABA methods have been supported by hundreds of scientific studies spanning the past five decades and have been found to be effective by numerous agencies and organizations,” says Behavior Frontiers Founder, Helen Mader, M.A., B.C.B.A., and “we felt is was critical to develop and offer the most comprehensive ABA training to both parents and professionals. Our ABA training videos make learning these new skills clear and easy because participants are able to actually see instructors effectively using these methods with children.” 

To find out more about Behavior Frontiers Innovative Training & Treatment, call 888-922-2843 or visit

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

An Artist with Autism

Follow an aspiring artist on her journey through life with autism. Not diagnosed until age 30, Siobhan Purdy documents how she has adapted her behavior to deal with her anxieties, overcome fears, and do what makes her happy. Read her blog and check out more of her artwork.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Behavior Frontiers Expands to the Dallas/Ft. Worth Area

The new Behavior Frontiers office located in North Dallas will serve the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex and the surrounding Collin, Denton and Tarrant counties. We will also serve military families through TRICARE’s Enhanced Access to Autism Services Demonstration Project in the Naval Air Station JRB Fort Worth area.

Families will receive individualized ABA treatment plans provided by Behavior Frontiers’ knowledgeable and highly-trained clinical staff members, including Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs), using accurate and results-driven ABA methods to improve the quality of life for children and their families.

We are pleased to announce that Grace Gomez, M.A., B.C.B.A., a valued member of the Behavior Frontiers team for almost six years, will be the Clinical Director of the new Dallas office. Although her positive outlook, knowledgeable clinical skills, and helpful attitude will be greatly missed in the Los Angeles office, we know that the families and employees she works with in Texas will benefit immensely.

Behavior Frontiers is now seeking qualified individuals to fill multiple positions, such as behavior supervisor, behavior instructor, and administrative assistant/scheduler, for the Dallas/Ft. Worth location. Interested applicants are encourage to send their cover letter and resume to

Friday, May 13, 2011

Light it up blue was a HUGE success!!!

Thank you to everyone who helped spread autsim awareness by showing off your blue lights on April 2nd. Your efforts were recognized and greatly appreciated! The team here at Behavior Frontiers all contributed by bringing in lamps from home and blue lights to shine our light on autism awareness from our 4th floor office here in Los Angeles.

If you liked that, you'll love the beautiful pictures of prominent buildings and landmarks from around the world including the Sydney Opera House, Empire State Building, and even Niagara falls showing their support by lighting it up blue:

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

California Autism Insurance Reform Bill

AB 171 will have its first hearing on Tuesday, April 26th at 1:30 pm.

Call your Assemblymember and ask them to co-author AB 171 and ask them to speak with their colleagues on the Assembly Health Committee and encourage them to support AB 171 and vote YES when it is called for a vote, if they are not already a co-author of the bill.

Find your assemblymember here

If you aren't sure of what to say, this will get you started:

"Hi. My name is (NAME) and I live at (ADDRESS) in your district. I am calling to ask Assemblymember (NAME) to co-author AB 171, the autism insurance reform bill, and ask for the favor of asking their colleagues on the Assembly Health Committee to join them and support the bill by voting YES when it comes to a vote. Not only will this bill provide the children of California with appropriate health care coverage for the treatments and therapies they need but it will save the state millions of dollars every year. This is very important to my own family because (STATE YOUR REASON). Thank you so much for your support."

Posting this below can help you spread the word through Facebook/Twitter as well.

"Attention CA friends and family! Help me secure healthcare coverage for my child with autism. Insurance companies in our state have consistently denied him/her with access to the therapy and treatment that he/she needs. Please register at Then help by calling your Assemblymember to ask them to co-author AB 171. Thanks so much!"


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Light It Up Blue

Behavior Frontiers just pledged to Light It Up Blue for autism -- and we think you should too! World Autism Awareness Day is coming up on Saturday, April 2, and it’s going to light up the world in blue! Light It Up Blue is an easy way to raise awareness about autism and be part of a worldwide movement to show your support for the autism community.

Sign the pledge to raise autism awareness:

Participating in Light It Up Blue is simple -- just sign the pledge to do things like wear blue clothing, feature the Light It Up Blue logo on your Facebook profile, or write a blog posts about the event.

Thanks for helping us light it up blue this year!