Autism Insurance Settlements Ill-Conceived, Advocates Say

Posted on January 01, 2012

Human tracking system

Nancy Hood’s son, sildenafil William Plant, adiposity was at home fretting that a power outage would stop him from watching the Pirates on TV, more about a ritual the young man with autism rarely skips. Plant, 18, threw up his hands in frustration and stormed through the front door of Hood’s home in Mt. Lebanon on that sweltering day in September. “I thought he’d walk around the loop to the library where he’s allowed to go with our dog, or was at that point, and he’d come right back,” she said. “Well, he didn’t.”

Hood called the police. A search began. By chance, a PennDOT worker spotted Plant about five hours later attempting to walk barefoot through the Liberty Tunnels roughly six miles from home. He was retracing a route to his grandmother’s home, where he reasoned the baseball game and the power might be restored. Though capable of speaking, Plant refused to give his name to nurses and doctors at UPMC Mercy in Uptown, a result of the fear and stress of the day, his mother said.

He eventually relinquished his sister’s name. A web search yielded his mother’s phone number and a safe reunion that led Hood to a possible solution: Project Lifesaver, an emergency tracking system through bracelets that emit a radio frequency, for those with autism or Alzheimer’s disease.

Hood and friends Robi Bruesewitz, whose daughter is autistic, Kelly Fraash and Dorene Ciletti, all of Mt. Lebanon, are trying to bring the program to their town and neighboring communities.

Read more about this emerging technology HERE>

Author: Jeremy Boren, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Read more: Emergency tracking system aids the autistic and those with Alzheimer’s – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

California officials claimed a win earlier this month after striking deals with two private insurers to cover behavior therapy for children with autism, search but now some advocates are calling the settlements a “sham.”

In recent weeks, the California Department of Managed Health Care announced agreements with Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of California under which the insurers said they would provide coverage of applied behavioral analysis, or ABA, therapy.

State officials said the agreements would “provide immediate coverage upfront to potentially thousands of additional children annually” when they announced the plans.

Now, however, some advocates are crying foul. In a joint letter to California Gov. Jerry Brown, six autism and consumer groups said that the settlement reached with Blue Shield — which was soon followed by a similar agreement with Anthem Blue Cross — is inherently flawed.

Specifically, they cite a requirement under the agreements that ABA be administered under the supervision of a licensed provider. This is a problem, they say, because California does not license ABA providers, making finding an approved therapist unlikely for families.

Read more HERE>

Author: Shaun Heasley,