Telehealth’s Positive Impact on ABA Families
The Growth of Telehealth Amid Unexpected Times
As the use of telehealth has grown vastly over the course of this past year due to the unexpected rise of the coronavirus, and there have been some major benefits arising. As stated by Jacob Kiley, Producer/VP, Liberty Behavioral Health, “The pandemic has severely impacted most industries and the ABA field has found itself as one of them. Like education it has been forced to shift very quickly, for this essential industry it needed a real time solution.” Primarily focusing on the familial aspect, the use of telehealth support has had a very positive impact for applied behavior analysis services.
Telehealth is covered by most insurance companies especially as the country continues to battle an ongoing pandemic, to encourage maintaining social distance. That being said, telehealth programs function similarly to in person sessions, just without the physical contact. Sessions can be completed as simply as via phone, tablet or computer on any HIPAA compliant platform. And, while the use of telehealth has expanded, the use of such therapy is still necessary to be deemed suitable for the patient’s specific needs by their BCBA supervisor.
What Telehealth does for ABA Families
Access to ABA therapy services can be difficult to receive, as the number of therapists is limited resulting in hour long drives for many families. Having to travel such distance for therapy makes it more challenging for families to function regularly and participate in other day to day activities. But, having access to services such as telehealth improves the overall family functionality as well as improving the care for ABA children, as it limits the amount of time spent traveling for treatment sessions, by allowing sessions to take place at home.
While telehealth access does not replace in person sessions with therapists, it does allow for BCBA to have easier access to patients. The ability for the BCBA to work remotely, increases the amount of care provided to their patients including: more modified treatment plans as well as more frequent training. Having remote access to therapy for ABA children results in more accelerated treatments and progress.
Telehealth Providing Parents’ ABA Training
Another major benefit of telehealth includes the training available to parents and caregivers to improve the care they are able to provide their children. With parents’ ability to learn and provide their children with ABA therapy, this also increases the rate at which children develop their skills and increase their learning opportunity. This further allows for families to engage more in other activities since it’s reducing the need for out of home sessions. The ability to conduct telehealth sessions, the BCBA gains access to more patients, as person-to-person contact is reduced, the spread between families and households decreases.
Group Sessions Via Telehealth
But, of course some concerns do fall in terms of using more digital health care as opposed to meeting in person. One of the main concerns may be not having access to group sessions, but telehealth group meetings are still being held, as there are some skills that can only be learned in a group setting. With more use of remote meetings, this can allot for development of social anxieties. But, Telehealth Group ABA is meant to aid in the process of eliminating anxieties, or the stresses and difficulty some face coming into the clinic for treatment sessions.
So while the growth of telehealth has grown immensely over the past year, it has provided many benefits to ABA families. One, being the BCBA being able to provide greater accessibility to their patients via virtual sessions; further explained by Jacob Kiley, “telehealth has been a key tool in keeping the ABA industry flowing and allowing them to keep that client touch in a new efficient way.” As this also improves family function, and allows for parents to have better understanding of ABA skills to help their child improve their skills. Which builds a stronger connection and better understanding of applied behavior analysis. Stay up to date on ABA changes and trends, and contact us today for customized insurance for your agency at behavioralhealthinsurance.com.