As a parent, you always go out of your way to do what’s best for your child. What if your child receives an autism spectrum diagnosis? In that case, you work endlessly to ensure your neurodivergent child gets the best treatment. However, many loving and concerned families face tough questions like, what are the costs of ABA therapy? And the even bigger question: Can we make it work? ABA Centers of Florida is here to help!
Experts consider ABA therapy to be the most effective treatment available for families experiencing the challenges autism can sometimes bring. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in addition to the generalized medical costs, behavioral interventions like ABA therapy for autism cost between $40,000 and $60,000 annually.
Because autism is a spectrum disorder, impairment ranges in severity. Some families may only require light ABA support for their child on the spectrum through transitions. In contrast, others will need an ABA provider around full-time to ensure their child’s safety. Your ABA treatment plan may call for a few hours of therapy or up to 40 hours each week. The duration of treatment your child requires is something that your provider will determine with careful consideration and data.
While ABA therapy is considered the industry’s gold standard, it can be one of the most expensive options. Fortunately, many insurances provide coverage, making this powerful treatment more accessible to the populations that need it most. This blog post will explore the average costs of ABA therapy and what you should consider when determining how to finance treatment.
What Is ABA Therapy, and What Does It Involve?
Applied Behavior Analysis, commonly called ABA therapy, is a science-based approach to managing the challenging behaviors exhibited by individuals with autism or experiencing developmental delays. In addition to addressing complicated behaviors, ABA focuses on teaching skills and supporting families through their journey. Ultimately, ABA therapy is the most prescribed treatment for individuals on the spectrum because it’s flexible and adaptively considers the needs of an entire family.
Much of ABA therapy focuses on teaching skills essential to independent living. Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) often work on underdeveloped skill sets related to self-help, self-care, emotional regulation, and school readiness skills. These areas are as vital for your child’s future endeavors as their formative years.
The ABA techniques your provider employs each session will always depend on the need of your child. Learning in ABA therapy often involves breaking tasks into manageable components and building positive reinforcement systems that promote healthy development. Over time, ABA therapy helps clients expand on many core development areas while addressing complex challenges.
How Much Does ABA Therapy Cost on Average? How Do Families Pay?
The costs of ABA therapy can be high because of the intensive training and certifications required to practice these specialized services. Professionals working with clients on the spectrum must demonstrate an understanding of the condition and the long-term effects of the programming they deliver. So, while ABA therapy can be an investment, it can also be an invaluable form of treatment that yields incredible outcomes for individuals needing additional support.
ABA therapy ranges from $50 to $250 per hour. Sometimes, a longer commitment to treatment may reduce the price hourly. The great news is insurance often covers treatment costs depending on your state and situation. So don’t be disheartened by the numbers.
The critical thing to remember as an autism parent is you have options, especially if your pediatrician recommends ABA therapy. In addition to insurance coverage, a sliding fee scale based on your income is also possible. Select school districts that provide special education may cover ABA if your child enrolls in their neighborhood. Additionally, many ABA therapists offer payment plans to help spread the cost of ABA therapy over time.
No family should have to choose between providing their child with ABA therapy and paying other essential bills. So, it’s important to understand your options and explore different ways to reduce the costs of ABA therapy.
What Factors Contribute to the Cost of ABA Therapy?
Understanding ABA therapy’s price tag helps some families make the most out of their child’s treatment hours. As mentioned, a critical component of ABA’s cost is the professional staff required to provide ABA services effectively. BCBAs must have a master’s degree and supervise hours, increasing professional expenses. Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTS) must receive extensive, ongoing training and take tests to register with the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB).
A comprehensive ABA program typically implements evidence-based strategies and data collection practices with its clients. A great ABA agency will utilize powerful software and technology, like tablets and cutting-edge autism apps. All these elements cost money.
Finally, the complexity of ABA and autism results in varying service durations required for each family. These variable durations make the costs of ABA therapy differ tremendously between families. Despite its proven efficacy, all these factors make ABA an expensive treatment option. However, if planned carefully in advance, families can manage ABA therapy costs accordingly. Many even get most of their child’s treatment covered.
Does Insurance Cover ABA Therapy?
Today, many insurance companies recognize the integral value of ABA therapy for individuals with autism. As a result, many states within the US cover at least some to all the costs of ABA therapy. The even better news is that experts believe insurance companies will continue to cover ABA and increase coverage for future generations. Investigating your options may be worthwhile if you’re considering therapy but apprehensive because of the cost.
How Can I Reduce the Cost of ABA Therapy?
When considering ABA therapy for your child on the spectrum, it is critical to recognize that the cost of treatment should not be the determining factor. What truly matters is whether this type of therapy is best. Investing in your child’s long-term health and happiness is an invaluable and necessary decision.
Despite the cost of ABA therapy, evidence shows that it helps neurodivergent children build upon positive behaviors and reach milestones. ABA therapy often gets clients and their families through some of the most challenging chapters of their life. All these factors can make ABA therapy well worth the investment.
Fortunately, there are ways to lessen the cost of ABA therapy, such as seeking scholarships or grants or communicating directly with your insurance provider. Some organizations offer financial support for families in need and cover the costs of ABA therapy. Additionally, many experts recommend families take advantage of financial assistance programs that can make a massive difference in accessing options.
Are Any Government Subsidies or Assistance Available to Help with the Costs of ABA Therapy?
For families of neurodivergent children, the costs of ABA therapy can be a significant financial burden that acts as a barrier to treatment. However, some support may be available to help. As an autism parent, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with government subsidies and other financial assistance available. Programs may cover some or all the costs of ABA treatment. It is worth learning what your location and district may offer.
How Can You Get the Most Value When Paying For ABA Therapy Services?
When investing in ABA therapy services, it is crucial to consider the long-term impact of treatment. At first, it’s natural to think that the least expensive option is the best way to save money. However, regarding the costs of ABA therapy, you should assess the quality of your providers and the developmental outcomes you can expect. Selecting a more established and resourced ABA provider may have longer-lasting positive effects.
Consider your options carefully. Additionally, weigh the costs of ABA therapy against the potential benefits it may provide. Understand what you pay to ensure you get the most value from your ABA therapy sessions. Best of luck on your ABA journey!
ABA Centers of Florida and the Costs Of ABA Therapy
ABA Centers of Florida understand that, for many families with limited resources, the costs of ABA therapy can cause apprehension and delay. We also recognize that every neurodivergent child deserves access to invaluable ABA services that improve their lives and transform daily living for everyone. Because of this, we work with most major insurance providers to cover our clients’ ABA treatment.
Call us at (772) 773-1975 to discuss your insurance benefits and learn more about the potential costs of ABA therapy for your child with autism. You can also visit ABACentersFL.com for more helpful ABA information and access to many incredible blogs with even more information about autism care!