Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.

  • AAB: Applied Animal Behavior

    AUT: Autism

    CBM: Clinical/Family/Behavioral Medicine

    CSS: Community, Social, and Sustainability Issues

    DDA: Developmental Disabilities

    EAB: Experimental Analysis of Behavior

    EDC: Education

    OBM: Organizational Behavior Management

    PCH: Philosophical, Conceptual, and Historical Issues

    TBA: Teaching Behavior Analysis

    VRB: Verbal Behavior

14th Annual Autism Conference; Miami, FL; 2020

Event Details

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Invited Paper Session #11

The Status and Future of Health Insurance Coverage of ABA Services

Monday, February 24, 2020
4:10 PM–5:00 PM
Regency Ballroom
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Instruction Level: Basic
CE Instructor: Lorri Unumb, J.D.
Chair: Julie Kornack (Center for Autism and Related Disorders)
LORRI UNUMB (The Council of Autism Service Providers)
Lorri Shealy Unumb is a lawyer, professor, mother of three boys (ages 17, 14, and 11), and an internationally renowned autism advocate. After two academic stints at law schools in D.C. (George Washington University) and Charleston, Lorri began teaching advocacy at the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Advocacy Center. During the same timeframe, she hosted an award-winning weekly television show called “The Law with Professor Lorri.” Following her firstborn son’s diagnosis with autism, Lorri began working in autism advocacy as a volunteer, writing ground-breaking autism insurance legislation for South Carolina (“Ryan’s Law”) that passed in 2007 and served as the catalyst for the national movement toward autism insurance reform. In recognition of Ryan’s Law, Lorri was awarded the Autism Society of America 2008 “Parents of the Year” award (along with her husband Dan). She then was recruited by the New York-based nonprofit Autism Speaks, where she now advocates full-time on behalf of individuals with autism. As head of state government affairs, she has testified more than 100 times on health insurance issues in legislatures throughout the United States and beyond.

What a difference a decade makes! Only 10 years ago, very few families had access to health insurance coverage for ABA. Today, ABA coverage is expected. But significant gaps in coverage still exist, and significant restrictions sometimes discourage or block providers from recommending and delivering needed intensity. Join Lorri Unumb, Esq., as she shares strategies for addressing or overcoming the coverage gaps and caps. Lorri will also discuss general insurance trends, including the recent proliferation of products that masquerade as insurance but don’t include ABA coverage.

Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) discuss the protections available to individuals with autism under the federal mental health parity law; (2) identify different types of health insurance policies and understand the significance of each type; (3) discuss the implications of the Affordable Care Act on autism insurance coverage, as well as spot plans that do not comply with ACA protections.



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Modifed by Eddie Soh