How to know if you’re getting the best quality services for your child

How to know if you’re getting the best quality treatment services for your child

 It comes down to five things:

  1. tell the truth,
  2. share fairly,
  3. be thankful,
  4. help others and
  5. move forward.

If your service provider fails on any of these things, they need to repair themselves before they can be more than superficially helpful.  If they don’t want to fix deficits in any one of these areas, you should seek another service provider.

If they aren’t telling the truth (as you understand it), then they’re not “pulling in the same direction as you are” and that means that to some extent, they’re pulling against you.  You can’t have that.  If you give them material to learn and they ignore it, or disagree with it (and can’t convince you that they’re right), it’s time to seek help elsewhere.  Sometimes, your own sense of right and wrong is more on-target than the sense that a stranger has, based on their necessarily more-limited understanding of “the way it is” with your child.

If they’re not expecting you to share the responsibility for helping your child fairly (if they’re “doing all the work” and letting you think that you’re not a necessary part of the treatment program), then they’re giving you a false idea of your own importance and value in your child’s life.  If they’re expecting you to “do all the work” they’re not fulfilling their responsibility as a professional service provider.  There has to be balance in the delivery of treatment for it to be optimally successful.

If they’re not thankful to be helping you, they don’t deserve the opportunity to offer help to you (or anyone else).  The least they can be is thankful for your trust and strive to repay your trust by working diligently (and without complaints or sloth) to do the best they can for you and your child.  Late arrivals for scheduled appointments is the first sign that they’re not thankful enough.

If they’re not helping, they’re not using their time, your time, or your child’s time productively.  If they’re willing to use their time nonproductively, they should use it somewhere else.

If they’re not showing that they are helping you and your child move forward, they have to go back to the drawing board to come up with a better plan to do so.  If they want you to be content to “keep things stable” then they want you to be satisfied with the illusion of treatment.

These are the criteria we use at the Institute for Behavior Change.  Visit for more information.

Steve Kossor

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EPSDT: The greatest treatment funding secret ever concealed

2012 PA Psychological Association conference presentation “The Medicaid-Education Connection” (handout with presentation notes)

Every state is in the midst of a Budget Crisis.  Eventually, they will subside and EPSDT will still be there as a mandate to fund treatment for children under the age of 21 who are disabled and enrolled in Medicaid.  In 36 states, family income isn’t counted, and any child with a disability (including all forms of Autism and ADHD) can be enrolled in Medicaid — and be eligible for treatment funding via the EPSDT mandate.  As soon as the “budget crisis” is over (maybe even before then) the parents of someone under the age of 21 who is disabled and enrolled in Medicaid are going to force the EPSDT door open.

Maybe they’ll enroll their child precisely because of the amazing and mandatory EPSDT benefit.  Then, unprepared, the state government will be desperate to close the EPSDT door but the horses will be out and running amok; the most the state will be able to do is try to build a corral to contain them.  That’s the way EPSDT got started in Pennsylvania in 1991.

Authorities in other states should be encouraged to see the future more clearly, avoid the fiscal catastrophes that Pennsylvania experienced when EPSDT was “awakened” here, and implement sensible, responsible controls over EPSDT expenditure of funds for mental health treatment for children like the ones that you’ll find at the Institute for Behavior Change website:  I created the model used by the Institute in 1981 and have been perfecting it ever since.  It can work in all 50 states.  Sooner or later, parents in every state will realize that “the greatest treatment funding secret in America” has been conscientiously hidden from them, while schools have been “tapping Medicaid” for hundreds of Millions of dollars (over $140,000,000 in 2010 in Pennsylvania alone; over $1 Billion since 2000).  That’s about $50 Billion in Medicaid funding eaten by schools in the past decade, while parents remain almost entirely oblivious to the fact that their disabled children are generating income for schools while they, themselves, are not being told that they could access that same funding source for their children at the same time.

I spoke at AutismOne on 5/24/12 (and will speak there again this year) and at the PA Psychological Association’s annual conference in 2012 (and will speak there again this year) about EPSDT funding for children’s mental health treatment and would love to travel to other states to help solidify parent efforts to obtain EPSDT funding for their children.  With Autism now afflicting 1 in 52 live male births in the USA this is no time to use “budget crisis” as a rationale for denying treatment funding to children that they are entitled to, as a Civil Right, under the Social Security Act.  That’s right.  It’s a Civil Right.   The treatment model I created in 1981 to deliver mental health treatment to children in their homes and schools funded by Medicaid/EPSDT has been studied by independent researchers at three different universities.  It works.  It can be created in all 50 states.  Watch this video to learn more about “How to secure EPSDT funding” for a child’s mental health treatment.  More later….


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