fbpx
Inner Circle Autism Network | Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions for ABA Therapy

You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers about Inner Circle Autism Network and ABA therapy programs for children with autism in Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Frequently Asked Questions: What is ABA Therapy at Inner Circle Autism Network?

What is ABA therapy?

ABA therapy is a research-based therapy approach that helps children with autism and other developmental disorders learn important new skills while working through everyday barriers, social difficulties and challenging behaviors.  

A Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) will develop a unique treatment plan for your child through formal assessment as well as through an in-depth interview with you and/or your family. A therapist (Registered Behavior Technician) will work with your child one-on-one or in small groups to teach a variety of skills and positive behaviors such as communication, social awareness, positive peer interactions, academic engagement, self-care skills, play skills and more.

ABA therapy is also proven to be effective in working through behaviors such as tantrums, bed-wetting, feeding problems, aggression, self-injury, and other destructive or dangerous behaviors.

Effective ABA therapy is not a “one size fits all” approach and should never feel as such. In order to achieve a truly individualized treatment plan, a BCBA will customize the intervention to each child’s skills, needs, interests and preferences. This means that an ABA program for one child may look completely different from another child’s.

The goal of ABA therapy is to help your child learn new skills and be able to do more things on their own.

What services do you provide?

Center based ABA therapy, home based ABA therapy, school readiness, school based ABA therapy and speech therapy.

How much does ABA therapy cost?

We are dedicated to helping you navigate the sometimes-challenging world of insurance. Prior to starting services, we will verify that your child’s insurance covers ABA therapy and determine any out-of-pocket cost that you may be responsible for. The cost of ABA therapy can vary as each insurance plan has different coverage and benefits.

What insurance plans are accepted?

We make every effort to accept as many insurances as possible. Listed below are the insurance companies that we are currently accepting (in network with), however please note that if your child’s insurance is not listed, there is still a possibility that we can work to get coverage for your child through out of network benefits or enrollment in state programs.

Insurances Accepted (subject to change):

  • Aetna
  • Cigna
  • UHC/UMR/Optum
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Anthem
  • AR Medicaid (Arkansas)
  • AR Medicaid Passe Groups-Arkansas (Empower, AR Total Care, CareSource, Summit Community Care)
  • Soonercare (Oklahoma Medicaid)
  • Qualchoice
  • Oklahoma Complete Health
  • Humana Healthy Horizons of Oklahoma
  • Aetna Better Health of Oklahoma

What are your hours of operation?

We provide services Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
We currently offer a variety of scheduling options that are designed to meet the unique needs of each family. 

  • Full Day: 8am-4pm
  • ½ Day Morning: 8am-12pm
  • ½ Day Afternoon: 1pm-4:30pm

Are there any requirements to start ABA therapy services?

An official medical diagnosis of autism conducted by a physician or psychologist is required for insurance to cover ABA services.
The diagnostic report must include scored assessments that support a diagnosis of autism and in some cases, additional primary care documentation is also required.

Frequently Asked Questions: How Does ABA Therapy Work at Inner Circle Autism Network?

CLOSED

What is required before my child can begin ABA therapy?

In order to best determine your child’s individual needs, Inner circle requires case history, family history, developmental history, and treatment consent packets to be completed. Additionally, we require that you participate in a consultation with a BCBA in order to determine your child’s needs, parent concerns, and treatment schedule. 

Each insurance can have significantly different requirements, however an official medical diagnosis of autism conducted by a physician or psychologist that includes scored assessments to support a diagnosis of autism is required by all insurers. 

In some cases there may be additional requirements. Additional documentation can often include items such as primary care visit summary, speech evaluation, vision/hearing evaluation, and others. 

How long does the intake process take?

The intake process from first contact to your child’s first day can vary from 3 to 8 weeks or more. Inner Circle is dedicated to ensuring that your child begins therapy as soon as possible, however, the timeline ultimately depends on a variety of unique factors including insurance funding, location availability, location staffing and your child’s treatment schedule.

What insurance companies do you accept?

We are committed to making our services accessible and affordable to as many families as possible, and being in network with most insurance providers is just one of the ways we are able to do this. 

Below is a current list of our current in-network providers, however if your insurance is not listed, we will work to find you options for services. 

  • Arkansas Medicaid
  • Summit Community Care
  • Empower Healthcare
  • Arkansas Total Care
  • CareSource
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • United Healthcare
  • Cigna
  • UMR
  • Soonercare
  • Qualchoice
  • Oklahoma Complete Health
  • Humana Healthy Horizons of Oklahoma
  • Aetna Better Health of Oklahoma

What will my child’s first week look like?

We believe that it is important that your child always feels comfortable and safe at therapy. In order to build a positive relationship from the start, the first few days of therapy are full of discovery, fun and play. During this time, your therapy team will take the time to get to know your child’s likes and dislikes, favorite activities and motivations through engaging interactive play. Once a positive relationship has been established, your child’s individual treatment goals will be slowly incorporated into therapy. 

Who will work with my child?

Because ABA therapy can range from 10-40 hours per week, your child will work with a strong team of passionate and committed individuals which will include a BCBA and 4-6 behavior therapists.

What does a typical day of ABA therapy look like?

ABA therapy sessions are tailored to each child’s specific goals, interests and skills and will therefore be different for each child. However there are some common elements that are often incorporated into every session.

  • Natural environment, play based instruction in which learning objectives and goals are naturally incorporated into interactive play. 
  • Direct one-on-one instruction from a therapist, often reflecting classroom like table top tasks
  • Social skills and group instruction often involves working on skills with their peers during activities such as art, music, circle time, pretend play and group games.
  • Therapy built around the use of reinforcement and positive interaction in order to build and maintain motivation for learning. 
  • Data collection occurs during every ABA session in order to document your child’s progress, behaviors and skills. Data is collected digitally by RBT’s and BCBAs through a web based platform and will occur in real time throughout the session.
  • Parent involvement is an important part of every ABA therapy program which is why we have built a parent training/observation room at each of our centers designed specifically to provide the opportunity for you to participate in your child’s journey.

    How long will my child need ABA therapy?

    At Inner Circle, we recognize that every child is unique and as such requires an individualized approach to treatment. This means that there is no magic formula or quick answer and depends on several factors including skills, needs, goals, rate of progress, attendance, intensity of services and other factors. Therapy can range from several months to several years. 

    Ultimately, it is our goal for every child to develop skills that will allow them to participate successfully in “real-life”. In order to ensure progress toward this goal, each treatment plan includes an individualized transition plan that defines the core skills and goals that are needed prior to transition. 

    Can I get both speech and ABA therapy on the same day?

    Absolutely! We want to make things as easy as possible for you. This is why our speech program is offered at the same time as regularly scheduled ABA therapy. A speech and language pathologist will evaluate, design and implement your child’s speech treatment plan while maximizing collaboration with the ABA team.

    Who can benefit from ABA therapy?

    ABA therapy helps children with autism improve social interactions, learn new skills, and maintain positive behaviors.

    How does ABA therapy work?

    ABA is based upon the principles of Behavior Analysis — that all behavior is shaped by interaction with the environment.

    Inner Circle’s integrative approach to ABA therapy emphasizes your child’s development across a variety of categories including communication, social interaction, language development, daily living skills, play skills, and social-emotional development.

    Therapy will incorporate a wide variety of skill areas such as language, communication, social skills, connecting with others, building confidence, positive self-esteem, daily living skills, critical thinking, and academic readiness.

    What are the goals of ABA therapy?

    Ultimately, it is our goal for every child to develop skills that will allow them to participate successfully in “real-life”. In order to ensure progress toward this goal, each treatment plan includes an individualized transition plan that defines the core skills and goals that are needed prior to transitioning out of ABA therapy.

    How is progress measured in ABA therapy?

    At Inner Circle, we recognize that every child is unique and requires measures of progress that are individualized along with their treatment plan.

    Methods to record data and analyze behavior include: direct observation, event, duration and interval recording, and Antecedent-Behavior-Consequence (ABC) data collection.

    How long does ABA therapy take?

    Because ABA therapy is tailored to each child’s unique needs there is no magic formula or quick answer for how long your child will need ABA therapy. The length of time depends on several factors including skills, needs, goals, rate of progress, attendance, intensity of services, and other factors. Therapy can range from several months to several years.

    How many hours per week are typically recommended for ABA therapy?

    Every child’s treatment plan is unique. After your consultation, the Treatment Director will provide you with a preliminary medical recommendation which will then be adjusted based on the results from the formal evaluation. On average children attend 20 hours per week but can attend up to 40 hours per week based on their needs.

    What does a typical ABA therapy session look like?

    ABA therapy sessions are tailored to each child’s specific goals, interests and skills and will therefore be different for each child. However there are some common elements that are often incorporated into every session:

    • Natural environment, play based instruction in which learning objectives and goals are naturally incorporated into interactive play. 
    • Direct one-on-one instruction from a therapist, often reflecting classroom-like table top tasks
    • Social skills and group instruction often involves working on skills with their peers during activities such as art, music, circle time, pretend play, and group games.
    • Therapy built around the use of reinforcement and positive interaction in order to build and maintain motivation for learning. 
    • Data collection occurs during every ABA session in order to document your child’s progress, behaviors, and skills. Data is collected digitally by registered behavioral therapists (RBTs) and BCBAs through a web based platform and will occur in real time throughout the session.
    • Parent involvement is an important part of every ABA therapy program.

    Will ABA therapy help improve my child's communication and social skills?

    The improvement of communication and social skills is a core element of ABA therapy. At Inner Circle, we focus on functional communication, emphasizing the understanding and use of language in meaningful contexts.

    For children who have limited vocal communication, we teach them to use alternative methods of communication including alternative communication (AAC) systems, such as sign language, picture exchange communication systems (PECS), or speech-generating devices. 

    We strive to help every child express their wants, needs, and thoughts through effective communication.

    Can ABA therapy help reduce challenging behaviors?

    ABA therapy is effective in helping to reduce challenging behaviors such as tantrums, bed-wetting, feeding problems, aggression, self-injury, and other behaviors. In addition, ABA therapy focuses on helping each child develop new, more appropriate behaviors and skills.

    Is ABA therapy evidence-based?

    Yes, ABA therapy is widely recognized as the only scientifically valid therapy available for treating behavioral issues associated with autism.

    What is a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)?

    Board-Certified Behavioral Analysts have completed graduate-level education requirements in the field of applied behavioral analysis and a minimum of one thousand hours of field work. After meeting the education and experience requirements they must pass a comprehensive exam administered by the Behavioral Analyst Certification Board (BACB). They must adhere to a code of ethics outlined by the BACB which emphasizes maintaining professional conduct, protecting client rights and confidentiality, and providing effective treatment. Additionally, BCBAs must engage in ongoing professional development to maintain their certification.

    BCBAs are highly trained professionals who specialize in behavior analysis and apply their expertise to assess, analyze, and address behavioral challenges.

    How can parents and caregivers be involved in ABA therapy?

    Parent involvement is an important part of every ABA therapy program which is why we have built a parent training/observation room at each of our centers designed specifically to provide the opportunity for you to participate in your child’s journey.

    Is ABA therapy covered by insurance, and how much does it cost?

    Yes! Below is a current list of our current in-network providers, however if your insurance is not listed, we will work to find you options for services. 

    • Arkansas Medicaid
    • Summit Community Care
    • Empower Healthcare
    • Arkansas Total Care
    • CareSource
    • Blue Cross Blue Shield
    • United Healthcare
    • Cigna
    • UMR
    • Soonercare
    • Qualchoice
    • Oklahoma Complete Health
    • Humana Healthy Horizons of Oklahoma
    • Aetna Better Health of Oklahoma

    Costs associated with ABA therapy depend on a number of factors, including the treatment plan, number of hours, and your insurance coverage.

    How is ABA therapy different from other therapies for autism?

    ABA therapy is based on behavioral science and helps teach new skills and behaviors in a fun and positive way through play-based interactions.

    Can ABA therapy be provided in a school setting?

    We are proud to partner with local school districts to provide ABA therapy within your child’s classroom. We will work with your child’s educational team to develop and implement a student-specific learning and support plan.

    School-based ABA services have to be approved by each school and insurance approval is required for school services.

    Can ABA therapy help with daily living skills and independence?

    ABA therapy can be instrumental in teaching and promoting daily living skills to promote independence. Some of these skills include:

    • Potty Training
    • Handwashing
    • Tooth Brushing
    • Feeding
    • Dressing
    • Hygiene

    Is ABA therapy only for children with autism?

    At Inner Circle we treat children with autism through age 10, depending on insurance coverage.

    Frequently Asked Questions: Social Skills Teaching at Inner Circle Autism Network

    What are common social challenges for children with autism?

    Children with autism can struggle with both basic and complex social skills, including:

    • Social awareness
    • Initiating conversation
    • Responding to their name
    • Sharing toys
    • Tolerating close proximity to others
    • Understanding body language
    • Using facial expressions

    Who provides social skills training for individuals with autism?

    Social skills training is provided by Registered Behavioral Technicians (RBTs), and Behavioral Technicians (BTs). All training and programs are supervised by Board-Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs). 

    What qualifications should a social skills training provider have?

    Our therapists meet the requirements set forth by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) and pass a certification examination.

    BCBAs who supervise treatment have obtained a graduate-level degree and met the requirements set forth by the BACB and obtained board certification.

    What are the common goals of social skills training for individuals with autism?

    Common goals include teaching children basic social skills like conversation, playing well with others, and body language. The precise goals will be determined by each child’s individualized treatment plan. 

    Can social skills training help improve communication and interactions with others?

    Yes! This is a core component of social skills training.

    What topics are typically covered in social skills training for autism?

    • Social interactions 
    • Communication skills
    • Play skills
    • Listening and responding skills
    • Social confidence
    • Body language and nonverbal communication
    • Recognizing emotions

    How is social skills training structured? Are there group sessions or individual sessions?

    Treatment plans include a mix of one-on-one and group sessions. The structure of the plan is individualized for each child’s needs. 

    How long does social skills training typically take for individuals with autism?

    The duration of training depends on several factors including skills, needs, goals, rate of progress, attendance, intensity of services and other factors. ABA therapy and social skills training can range from several months to several years. 

    Ultimately, it is our goal for every child to develop skills that will allow them to participate successfully in “real-life”. In order to ensure progress toward this goal, each treatment plan includes an individualized transition plan that defines the core skills and goals that are needed prior to transition. 

    How often should my child attend social skills training sessions?

    Because each child receives an individualized treatment plan, the number of weekly sessions can vary. 

    What does a typical social skills training session for children with autism involve?

    Social skills and group instruction often involves working on skills with their peers during activities such as art, music, circle time, pretend play, and group games.

    Data collection occurs during every ABA session in order to document your child’s progress, behaviors and skills. Data is collected digitally by RBTs and BCBAs through a web-based platform and will occur in real time throughout the session.

    Can social skills training help children with autism make friends and build relationships?

    Yes! Social skills training is designed to prepare every child for “real life” and help them build a solid foundation for building relationships and friendships in their life. 

    How can parents and caregivers support their child's social skills development at home?

    In appropriate situations, ICAN can provide home based services to help children generalize the skills they learn at our centers into their home environment.

    Parents and caregivers can also help their child practice their new social skills by providing social opportunities in the community such as playing with peers at the park or attending clubs tailored to the child’s interests. Your child’s BCBA can help you develop some ideas for appropriate social opportunities that your child may enjoy. 

    Can social skills training be provided at home?

    Yes! Inner Circle offers ABA therapy at home where children can receive social skills training in a familiar environment.

    What are some signs that my child may benefit from social skills training?

    Children who may benefit from social skills training may struggle with perspective taking, have difficulty having two-way conversations, experience challenges in talking about non-preferred topics, or have limited success in making and maintaining appropriate friendships. If you think your child may benefit from social skills training, reach out to our intake team! 

    Will social skills training improve my child's self-confidence in social situations?

    The development of social skills helps children with autism learn how to interact with others in a variety of situations, increasing their self-confidence when engaging in play, learning, and other social interactions.

    Can social skills training help with managing challenging behaviors in social settings?

    ABA therapy is effective in helping to reduce challenging behaviors such as tantrums other negative behaviors that can arise in social situations and increase positive interactions and through the development of social skills. 

    How can social skills training help with understanding social cues and nonverbal communication?

    Understanding social cues and nonverbal communication is an essential component of our social skills training programs. Through this training, children can better recognize social cues and understand how to recognize and use nonverbal communication like body language and facial expressions.