Frequently Asked Questions
• Do you diagnose?
Working With Autism, Inc. does not diagnose. Please contact our WWA Administrator or Clinical Coordinator if you are interested in a list of resources that may help you identify a diagnostician in your area.
If you think your child has autism spectrum disorder or you have concerns with the way your child plays, learns, speaks, or acts, contact your child’s doctor for further consultation. Ask the doctor for a referral to a specialist to provide an in-depth evaluation of your child.
If your child is under the age of 3 years old, contact your local Regional Center https://www.dds.ca.gov/rc/listings/
• Does my child have to have a formal autism diagnosis to get treatment?
Children are required to have a diagnosis of autism or other pervasive developmental disorders in order to receive coverage from insurance providers. Additionally, the diagnostic evaluation must include a recommendation of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA).
• What is the age range of children you serve?
Working With Autism serves children between the ages of 18 months to 18 years old.
• What services do you provide?
Functional Behavior Assessments
Applied Behavior Analysis and Discrete Trial Training
Adaptive Skills Therapy
School Behavioral Services
• Do you provide in-home services or in-clinic services?
Insurance and Regional Center funded services are provided in the home or via telehealth.
District contracted school behavior services, as authorized by a student’s IEP, are provided physically at school or via video-based platforms for distance learning.
• Do you provide services in my area?
Working With Autism, Inc.’s service area consists of the greater San Fernando Valley (including Burbank, Glendale, and Calabasas), Santa Clarita, Hollywood, Bel Air, Pacific Palisades, West Los Angeles, Downtown and South Los Angeles.
Do you require a minimum number of hours?
Yes. We require parents to commit to what is medically necessary for their child to make progress. Your BCBA will prescribe a level of service (number of weekly hours) based on your child’s individual needs that will most likely lead to the best opportunity for behavioral improvements.
• Do you provide services on weekends?
We are able to provide weekend sessions on a case by case basis. Before treatment begins, our Scheduling Department will inform you of what options are available for you and work together to finalize your schedule.
• Do I have to be present while my child is receiving services?
In order for a child to make progress, family participation is a vital component. Your Clinical team will recommend a level of participation they determine is necessary. We encourage parents to frequently sit in on sessions. You are not required to participate in all ABA sessions; however, a caregiver over the age of 18 must be onsite at the home at all times.
• Do you provide school-based services as funded by my Insurance carrier?
Yes, we can, if IEP services are not being authorized and/or provided by your child’s school. It must be considered medically necessary and a recommended service by your WWA Clinical staff. Your insurance company must approve it and your school must approve WWA staff to be on premise with your child.
• Do you provide Telehealth ABA Services?
Our Telehealth program allows Board Certified Behavioral Analysts to provide real-time training and service delivery. Our Telehealth ABA Program includes: Functional Behavior Assessment, Behavior Plan with strategies to address specific behaviors, Parent education and training, ABA program implementation, Supervision and monitoring of program.
• How do I start in-home services for my child?
The first step is identifying the type of services your family is looking for or the type of services that have been recommended for your child.
1. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is primarily covered under health insurance.
Health insurance information would be obtained and ABA benefits would be verified prior to case setup
WWA accepts the following health insurance:
- Anthem Blue Cross of California
- Blue Shield of California/Magellan Health
- LA Care Medi-Cal
Once ABA benefits are confirmed with the insurance carrier and any coinsurance amounts have been identified, should you wish to move forward the case is assigned to one of our Board-Certified Behavior Analysts and an authorization request is sent to the insurance carrier.
Should your health insurance (as a self-funded plan) not provide for ABA, Regional Center funding is available for registered consumers for whom ABA has been recommended/prescribed.
Working With Autism, Inc. will need a diagnostic evaluation recommending ABA in order to request authorization for either a Functional Behavior Assessment or for the start of direct services.
2. Adaptive Skills Therapy (AST)
Regional Center funding is available for registered consumers for whom AST has been recommended.
a. Once our agency has confirmed we are able to provide services to your child the Regional Center service coordinator would be notified by the family and by Working With Autism, Inc. of acceptance of the case.
b. Authorization for services would then be issued to Working With Autism, Inc by the Regional Center.
3. Working With Autism, Inc. also accepts private pay clients
• What qualifications does your staff have?
WWA Case Supervisors are Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA). All WWA BCBAs hold a Master’s Degree; have completed 270 hours of graduate-level coursework in specific behavior analytic content, and 1500 hours of supervised experience in designing and implementing Applied Behavior Analysis interventions, as well as passing the professionally-developed BCBA examination. A BCBA is certified by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board and thus meets the standard requirements to practice Applied Behavior Analysis.
The WWA Instructors are Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs). All WWA RBTs hold a Bachelor’s Degree, have successfully completed a criminal background check, and have completed 40 hours of RBT training. RBTs are paraprofessionals that practices under the close, ongoing supervision of a BCBA. WWA RBTs are primarily responsible for the direct implementation of skill-acquisition and behavior-reduction plans developed by the WWA Case Supervisor.
• What does WWA’s initial assessment involve?
Once authorized to conduct an initial assessment, one of our highly trained BCBAs will schedule an Intake appointment with the primary caregiver. During this meeting, the Assessor will review administrative paperwork, ask questions about your child’s developmental history, review previous services, and discuss your child’s needs and capabilities. Additionally, the Assessor will inquire about problem behavior, such as physical aggression, self-injury, tantrums, or other non-compliant behaviors.
Observations will be scheduled to gather information by directly observing your child in the home. WWA staff are there to take note of your child’s behaviors and caregiver responses to them. At this time the Assessor will also get a sense of your child’s daily schedule and routine. Furthermore, they will begin to determine the factors that may be maintaining your child’s problem behaviors (e.g., attention from others, avoidance of non-preferred activities). Our team will collaborate with you to create a customized set of goals to help reduce problem behaviors, increase functionally equivalent replacement behaviors, and address additional skill development in the environment in which they are likely to occur.
• How long does it take to start receiving services?
While we always work to help you as quickly as possible, scheduling your initial assessment depends on a few factors, including the responsiveness of your insurance company. Give us a call to discuss your needs—we promise to be transparent about our scheduling availability right from the start so you always know what to expect. From the time we are in receipt of an authorization to begin the assessment to the start of services, it typically takes 2-3 months.
• What will services look like in my home?
While WWA is awaiting the authorization from the Insurance carrier or Regional Center to begin in-home services, your schedule for services and staffing will be finalized based on information received during the Intake and Assessment process.
When services begin, the Behavior Instructor(s) will begin working in your home during the scheduled times. The BCBA will then come to the home to supervise the program, make changes to treatment goals when needed, provide ongoing training and supervision to staff, analyze your child’s data, and ensure that all persons involved in the process are kept up to date on progress and program changes. Additionally, the BCBA will schedule monthly clinical team meetings to discuss any new concerns, and the best ways to target skill acquisition and generalization with the family outside of therapy sessions.
Behavioral staff will assist caretakers in learning strategies to continue to maintain behaviors in addition to teaching new behaviors. Sessions will be scheduled when caretaker participation is possible. Caretakers will be expected to actively participate in at least 20 minutes of each session. Participation includes observation and direct intervention using learned techniques and strategies. Caretakers are expected to practice skills and implement interventions whenever opportunities present themselves outside of session time.
• What is Applied Behavior Analysis?
Applied Behavior Analysis is currently the most effective treatment for teaching skills and reducing problem behaviors associated with Autism. ABA is a science that uses the principles of behavior and other evidenced based procedures to provide reinforcement for appropriate behaviors. Skills are broken down into the simplest steps and taught individually using reinforcement strategies. When mastered these skills are combined and generalized to become a part of the child’s behavioral repertoire.
• What is the Special Education Process for School?
The special education process determines whether or not your child is eligible for special education and related services and if so, what is appropriate for your child.
There are four basic steps in the special education process:
Step 1: Referral for Assessment
A parent/guardian or teacher who believes that a child may need special education services may request a special education assessment of the child. The request should be made in writing and provided to the Assistant Principal Elementary Instructional Specialist (APEIS) or Principal. A Request for a Special Education Assessment Form is available in all school offices.
Step 2: Assessment
An assessment involves gathering information about your child. Assessments may include individual testing, observations, interviews with the child and school personnel, and review of
school records, reports and work samples.
Step 3: Development and Implementation of an Individualized Education Program (IEP)
After your child has been assessed, an Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting will be held. At this meeting, the IEP team will discuss the results of the assessment and determine whether your child is eligible for special education services.
Step 4: IEP Review
If your child is receiving special education services, his or her IEP will be reviewed at an IEP team
meeting at least once a year to determine how well it is meeting his or her needs.
For more information, please contact WWA’s Clinical Coordinator.