What does an ABA program run by CABS look like?
Each individual child and family’s ABA program is unique and can vary greatly. After reviewing the client and family’s needs we are able to determine the best applications of ABA and the best settings to teach in. Settings can vary from individualized therapy rooms, to play sessions in our sensory gym, to community outings, to cooking and play activities in the home environment. While “table time” may be part of our sessions, we are heavily focused on generalization of skills to everyday environments.
Building a history of trust and motivation is our goal. While we are able address a variety of skills including academics, language, self-care, and social skills, our first priority is on communication and relationships. Sessions are built around the client's reinforcers and creating a motivating environment to learn in.
What skills do you address?
Improving our clients' quality of life is the foundation of all of our treatment goals. Whether it be increasing communication skills, social interactions, self-regulation strategies, or academic skills, our end goal is to ensure that our clients are using their skills independently and in socially significant ways. Some of the skills that can be addressed include:
- Receptive and expressive language skills
- Independence in self-care routines & toilet training
- Social communication and play skills
- Social referencing
- Leisure activities
- Behavior regulation and self-monitoring
How many hours a week do you recommend?
Research and literature show that clients with the best outcomes received 20-40 hours a week of ABA therapy. While this sounds like a lot of therapy, remember that ABA is not just table time and can easily be incorporated into daily routines, play, and social interactions. Typically we recommend no less than 10 hours a week of ABA therapy.
How do I know if home or clinic is a better option?
There are several factors that go into selecting the option that is best for your child and family. Modifying environmental variables is a crucial part of an ABA program. Distractions such as electronics, toys, or siblings, limited space, or competing reinforcement available, may make it difficult for us to achieve our goals during our sessions. In addition, for some clients, it may be difficult for them to accept changes to their routines or established play patterns. However, generalization of skills, consistency between therapists and parents, and more frequent opportunities for parent participation are benefits of a home program.
A clinic setting provides a new motivating environment to learn in with significantly less distractions. Clinic settings typically allow clients and therapists to create trusting relationships more quickly as there is less competition with “free” reinforcement in the home and we are able to focus more on “giving” than “taking” of reinforcement.
With that said, generalization and parent participation are crucial to the success of any ABA program. Regardless of selecting a home program, clinic program, or combination of both, weekly to monthly parent coaching sessions are strongly encouraged in the home environment.
Who will be working with my child?
Each client will be working with ABA therapists who are supervised by a Board Certified Behavior Analyst or Associate Behavior Analyst (BCBA or BCaBA). All of CABS' therapists hold a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in psychology, education, social work, or speech pathology, and most are pursuing master’s degrees in Behavior Analysis. All CABS therapists have a minimum of 5 years working with children and 3 years experience with children with ASD. The majority of our therapists have been with CABS for 3 years or longer. CABS' supervising behavior analysts hold BCBA or BCaBA certification and have a minimum 5 years experience running and supervising ABA programs for children with ASD.
How much interaction will I have with my supervising BCBA?
Supervision hours vary by client based on need, the number of ABA hours the client is receiving weekly, and whether you select a home or clinic option. For example, a five-hour a week home program would receive less supervision than a 40-hour a week clinic program.
Typically, no less than 2-6 hours of direct supervision with a client is provided by the BCBA each month. This entails working with the client, coaching therapists and parents, and reviewing programs with parents and therapists. In addition, the BCBA will meet regularly with therapists in the clinic setting without client present to review programs, discuss videos, and provide updates.
We encourage parents to ask questions and be active in their child’s program. You will have access to your BCBA’s cell phone number and email, and will always receive a response in less than 24 hours.
Within the first couple weeks of starting, the team will meet to create an individualized treatment plan. Each treatment plan is for a six-month period and will address a variety of skill areas. Goals and target skills will be selected based on the treatment plan, and data on these targets, as well as challenging behaviors, will be taken throughout our sessions.
CABS utilizes a web-based data collection system called Catalyst. This HIPAA secure program allows us to share data, graphs, videos, and session notes with parents and other team members immediately. Parents will have access to updated graphs and progress charts daily.
At the end of every six-month period, goals will be updated and progress will be discussed with parents before creating a treatment plan for the following six-month period.
Is ABA right for my child?
The question isn’t so much is ABA right for your child, but is your consultant the right fit for your family and child. ABA is a science that can be applied to a variety of disciplines and applications. If you are not seeing progress in your child’s program, you may want to see what other applications of ABA may be a better fit for your family.
We typically say that a client should be making progress on a target skill within two-four weeks of introduction of a plan or program. If progress is not being made, the skill may not be broken down into small enough components or the proper environmental modifications are not being made to support quicker progress. It is the role of the supervising BCBA to ensure that the client is constantly improving.
Do you accept insurance and what are your rates?
CABS is in-network with BCBS and Tricare Insurance, and will soon be in-network with most other major insurance companies. Our rates vary based on negotiated rates with each insurance company. CABS does not bill for phone calls, emails, travel or mileage, or for multiple therapists during team meetings or co-treat sessions. Please contact our office for private pay/out-of-pocket rates.
How do I get started?
After completing a short application, a staff member will contact you to schedule a 1-hour home visit. This visit is not billable and is a way for us to meet you and your family, for you to ask questions to us, and for us to make sure that we are the best fit for you. Shortly after this visit, we will then review our schedules and availability and/or discuss with you recommendations for other agencies that may be a better fit for you and your child’s needs.