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Behavioral Lifeboat

Behavioral Lifeboat is a nonprofit organization. Our mission is to make evidenced-based behavioral therapy accessible to all by increasing awareness, helping to make comprehensive insurance benefits affordable and meaningful, helping schools provide more effective behavioral therapy programs, and providing grants to make such therapy affordable when other solutions are not available.
Behavioral Lifeboat has written 22 posts for Behavioral Lifeboat

Q&A – Federal Mental Health Parity

Q:  What is the Mental Health Parity Act (Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008)? A:  The Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008  eliminates discrimination by plans that voluntarily cover mental health conditions, including autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). (See below “Q: Is autism a mental health condition?”) The … Continue reading

“Q&A: Can you share your experience or advice about how to develop speech?”

Today, we received the first question below from a parent in Saudi Arabia.  We hope this Q&A helps! Q:     My child is 10+ years old and can speak only two to three words. Can you share your experience or advice about how to develop speech? A:     Have you tried Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)?    There are … Continue reading

Autism Insurance Coverage Mandated in California Under Bill Signed by Gov. Jerry Brown

In case you had not heard, Governor Brown signed SB 946 in California today: Autism coverage mandated in California under bill signed by Brown: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/california-politics/2011/10/jerry-brown-autism-coverage.html Lots of hard work and dedication led to this success: Autism advocates reunite in support of SB 946 | City Brights: Rachel Norton | an SFGate.com blog – http://blog.sfgate.com/rnorton/2011/10/05/autism-advocates-reunite-in-support-of-sb-946/ Thank … Continue reading

Q&A – Is it a Good Idea to Encourage Your Employer to Promote Causes That Benefit Family Members with Autism?

Q:           Should I try to get my company to put an autism benefit into our health plan or expand the existing benefit? A:            Asking this question can be very risky.  If you ask your employer to put an autism benefit into our health plan, you may lose existing coverage or waive your privacy rights. We … Continue reading

Q&A: The Affordable Care Act

Q:           After a huge federal health initiative was passed, why can’t my kids get insurance coverage for autism? A:            The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (Affordable Care Act) sets the table for dramatic change.  Depending on how the legislation is implemented, health plans with mandatory coverage for children … Continue reading

Washington Post Article Attacks Affordable Care Act, Uses Scare Tactics. Children Need Federal Solution

On September 24th, the Washington Post published a very misleading article entitled “Autism treatment benefits could be jeopardized by federal health law provision” (By Phil Galewitz, Kaiser Health News; see same article at “Parents Fear Health Law Could Derail Autism Coverage”).  Why does Kaiser Health News use scare tactics?  Their interests certainly do not appear … Continue reading

Autism Speaks State Autism Insurance Reform Initiative

Q:     What is the Autism Speaks State Autism Insurance Reform Initiative? A:     Autism Votes, an Autism Speaks initiative, is working to change state insurance laws to require private health insurance policies to cover the diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs).  In connection with its State Autism Insurance Reform Initiative, Autism Speaks is … Continue reading

Q&A: ERISA Preemption – Basic Information

Q:  What is ERISA preemption?  How does Federal law (ERISA) prevent Florida from mandating what benefits a health plan covers?  A:    Federal law (ERISA) generally prevents states from directly regulating any fringe benefit that an employer provides to employees, including health benefits.  This exemption from state regulation is generally referred to as ERISA preemption. There … Continue reading

Q&A: Identifying Exempt Self-Insured Plans – Basic Information

Q:  Should I ask my employer if my health plan is self-insured? A:    If possible, it is better to make the determination yourself.  If you ask your employer to confirm the applicability of the autism insurance mandate to your health plan or that your plan is self-insured, you may lose existing coverage or waive your … Continue reading

Q&A: Autism Benefits Mandates – Basic Information

Q:     What is a health benefits mandate? A:     A health benefits mandate is a requirement that an insurance company or health plan cover (or offer coverage for) specified benefits for specific patient populations. These mandates can be the subject of state or federal legislation State health benefit mandates only affect an employer sponsored health … Continue reading

Florida’s Autism Insurance Benefits Mandate Who Will Benefit, Who Will Not, and Why?: Chapter 10

Chapter 10: Conclusion – What next? (Originally published July 7, 2008) In this and other Chapters, in a Q&A format, we provide some basic information that we hope will help you answer questions you may have on various topics related to the Florida autism legislation.  See Introduction and Table of Contents.  In Chapter 9, we … Continue reading

Florida’s Autism Insurance Benefits Mandate Who Will Benefit, Who Will Not, and Why?: Chapter 9

Chapter 9: Evaluation (Originally published July 7, 2008) In this and other Chapters, in a Q&A format, we provide some basic information that we hope will help you answer questions you may have on various topics related to the Florida autism legislation.  See Introduction and Table of Contents.  In this Chapter, we discuss whether the … Continue reading

Florida’s Autism Insurance Benefits Mandate Who Will Benefit, Who Will Not, and Why?: Chapter 8

Chapter 8: Florida Autism Legislation – Medicaid Waiver for Developmental Disabilities (Originally published July 7, 2008) In this and other Chapters, in a Q&A format, we provide some basic information that we hope will help you answer questions you may have on various topics related to the Florida autism legislation.  See Introduction and Table of … Continue reading

Florida’s Autism Insurance Benefits Mandate Who Will Benefit, Who Will Not, and Why?: Chapter 7

Chapter 7: Florida Autism Insurance Mandate – Identifying Exempt Self-Insured Plans (Originally published July 7, 2008) In this and other Chapters, in a Q&A format, we provide some basic information that we hope will help you answer questions you may have on various topics related to the Florida autism legislation.  See Introduction and Table of … Continue reading

Florida’s Autism Insurance Benefits Mandate Who Will Benefit, Who Will Not, and Why?: Chapter 6

Chapter 6: Florida Autism Insurance Mandate – Understanding the Self-Insured Plan Exemption (Originally published July 7, 2008) In this and other Chapters, in a Q&A format, we provide some basic information that we hope will help you answer questions you may have on various topics related to the Florida autism legislation.  See Introduction and Table … Continue reading