Hope Reach Overview
We serve approximately 200 children, providing 25-40 hours per week per child of intense Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy focusing on communication, behavioral, social, and cognitive skills. We currently offer center-based services in Greenville, Greenwood, and Woodruff. We offer in-home and in-school treatment in the following counties: Anderson, Charleston, Cherokee, Greenville, Spartanburg, Pickens, and Union. Hope Reach is a two-time recipient of the United Way of the Piedmont's Program Excellence Award.
Hope Reach uses a team approach when providing Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services. Each child’s treatment team consists of:
▪ 2-5 line therapists who work one-on-one in blocks of 2-3 hours,
▪ A lead therapist who provides weekly hands-on assistance and feedback,
▪ A Board Certified supervisor who develops and monitors the child’s individualized plan; and
▪ Family members who implement the plan in “real life” situations outside of therapy.
To ensure that each child’s time is used efficiently, the treatment team (including family members) meet to evaluate the plan every month.
Applied Behavior Analysis Explained
ABA is a form of behavior analysis based on the findings of B.F. Skinner in the 1930s, including his book Verbal Behavior, published in 1957. In 1968, D.M. Baer, M.M. Wolf, and T.R. Risley defined ABA as the process of systematically applying interventions based upon the principles of learning theory to improve socially significant behaviors to a meaningful degree, and to demonstrate that the interventions employed are responsible for the improvement of behavior. They described ABA as having seven dimensions:
- application (social significance)
- behavioral (changes in behavior that are measurable)
- analytical (controllable)
- technological (replicable)
- effective, and
- general (persists over time, various environments, and spreads to other behaviors).
In 1987, Dr. Ivar Lovaas published a study showing the efficacy of ABA in treating children with autism, a finding that has been confirmed in hundreds of published studies and endorsed by many, including the US Surgeon General.
If you are interested in receiving ABA therapy from Hope Reach, please fill out the Hope Reach ABA Interest Form and you will be notified when we have an opening to provide services for your child. Our waiting list for services is dependent on funding and availability rather than a numbering system.
Once we have a team available to start services, you will be schedule for an intake meeting. The intake meeting is the time to have your clinical questions answered. The clinical director will conduct a brief skills assessment and behavior analysis with your child and will walk you through a questionnaire. Billing and funding will be discussed during this meeting as well. The meeting usually lasts about 3 hours. Your child will need to be present at this meeting.
At the end of the meeting, we will give you an information sheet detailing what needs to take place before therapy hours can begin. It will likely take about 2 months before a trained team is ready to begin services.
After the intake meeting has taken place, any necessary assessments can be performed. The assessment requirements vary based on your funding source. During this time, your child will be assigned a supervisor, lead therapists, and line therapists. Services can begin once all assessments have been submitted, all necessary authorizations have come to our office, and your team is ready.
Potential Funding for Hope Reach Services
Under Ryan’s Law, certain South Carolina insurance companies must cover Applied Behavior Analysis services.
When did Ryan’s Law go into effect?
It covers from the first renewal date of the insurance policy after July 1, 2008.
What insurance policies fall under the mandate of Ryan’s Law?
At this time, coverage is clear for two types of policies:
- Policies for South Carolina state employees, and
- Group policies with more than 50 employees that are written in South Carolina and are not “self-insured” policies.
However, it is worth pursuing coverage with any insurance company because clarification of Ryan’s Law is still progressing.
Hope Reach Program Staff
Mark Knight, BCBA
Scott Braud, BCBA
Bethany Welborn, BCBA