Senators urge feds to mandate coverage of autism therapy


The video for this lesson contains time sensitive information. Developments in the case discussed in the video which occurred after the release date are not covered in the video or this curriculum. See “Follow-Up Assignments” below for a way of addressing this fact in your lesson plan.

Lesson title

Senators urge feds to mandate coverage of autism therapy

Video title, link and release date

Senators urge feds to mandate coverage of autism therapy; October 26, 2012

Video length

Two minutes and thirty-five seconds

Grade level

High school

Video Summary

  • Four US Senators recently wrote a letter to the US Department of Health and Human Services urging Senator Kathleen Sebelius to require insurers to cover applied behavioral analysis therapy.
  • ABA therapy can cost families up to $50,000 yearly.
  • The Affordable Care Act (which began in 2014), requires all insurance plans to cover 10 categories of healthcare, including one for “mental health and substance use disorder services, including behavioral health treatment.”
  • However, states have a large amount of discretion to determine which services are covered under those 10 categories.

Review questions

1. What Act’s reforms would the coverage of applied behavioral analysis therapy be under?

2. ABA therapy is standard for what type of disability?

3. What will happen in 2013 for federal employees?

 Free Writing Journal Prompt(s)

What about this report do you have questions about?

What do you want to know more about?

Follow-up Assignment(s)

Note the date of the video and, if a significant amount of time has passed, a good follow-up activity might be to do a Google search to see if there are any new developments

Do a Google search to find related information


U.S. Senate’s Online Press Releases, The Examiner, DisAbility Rights Galaxy

Katie Smith is a Seattle University student studying Strategic Communication. Katie is an avid athlete and loves reading, hiking and exploring Seattle's restaurant scene.