BOSTON (April 1, 2011) - On March 31, 2011, the Autism Speaks government relations team joined the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts (APBA) in hosting an Autism Insurance Implementation Workshop. Held in Boston in conjunction with the APBA first annual convention, the day-long Implementation Workshop was sold-out at 125 attendees. The day began with Lorri Unumb, Senior Policy Advisor and Counsel, presenting an overview of autism insurance reform, including arguments typically made against such coverage. The rest of the morning was devoted to a panel discussion on Obtaining Health Insurance Coverage of ABA Intervention for Autism with Dr. Gina Green of the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts; Dr. Eric Larsson of the Lovaas Institute Midwest; Billy Edwards of Behavioral Innovations; and Dr. Bryan Davey of the Arizona Centers for Comprehensive Education and Life Skills.
The afternoon focused on Implementing Autism Insurance Laws. Special guests Kevin Beagan and Nancy Schwartz of the Massachusetts Division of Insurance shared insights from a regulators perspective. Dr. Green then spoke on anticipating and appealing denials of coverage of ABA treatment, followed by Bryan Davey of Arizona, Billy Edwards of Texas, and Susan Butler and Ann Eldridge of South Carolina sharing lessons theyve learned as three early enactment states. Finally, Dan Unumb, Director of Litigation for South Carolina Legal Services, closed the day with a lawyers perspective on enforcing autism insurance mandates what to do when insurers fail to comply with the new laws.