How Children with Medicaid Can Receive Behavior Therapy

children medicaid behavior therapy

Finding the right resources for your special needs child can be a tough and confusing process. That’s why the state of Florida has partnered with the Better Support Service to offer healthcare assistance to parents, guardians, and caretakers of children with psychological health disorders. Parents of children with cognitive disorders such as Autism, ADHD, and ADD may be eligible to qualify for Florida Medicaid’s assistance program, which offers Behavior Analysis services to special needs families at reduced costs.

What is Behavioral Analysis?

The Behavior Analysis (BA) program is designed to help parents and guardians reduce unwanted behavior, like tantrums and outbursts, while affirming healthy activity and promoting effective communication. Using behavioral therapy techniques, the Behavior Analysis program specializes in improving social, behavioral, and adaptive proficiencies, which may be severely lacking in children with cognitive disorders.

The Behavior Analysis program takes a scientific approach to therapy, using rewards and consequences to reinforce acceptable behavior, reduce unacceptable behavior, and encourage the development of new skills. By setting concrete goals and exposing special needs children to constructive therapy environments, Behavior Analysis has been shown to dramatically improve learning ability, conversational attentiveness, and social interaction among recipients. To ensure quality of care, all Behavior Analysis analysts are required to be certified by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.

How can I start receiving these benefits?

To deliver respectful, discrete, and therapeutic healthcare solutions, Better Support Service employs highly trained and certified behavioral health professionals. As a licensed and qualified provider with a history of providing excellent care, Better Support Service is able to efficiently link families with the resources and benefits they need.

Behavior Analysis services are now available to all qualified recipients of Florida Medicaid who are 21 years of age and younger. To apply for the program and start receiving assistance, parents and guardians should contact the Better Support Service, whose professionals can walk you through the application and documentation process. As a qualified provider, the Better Support Service has the resources and connections necessary to approve your request and begin providing behavioral resources as soon as possible.

To gain access and begin receiving your Medicaid sponsored benefits and assistance, parents and guardians of children with cognitive disorders should complete the following steps:

  • Step 1: Visit your doctor to obtain a written order for Behavior Analysis services
  • Step 2: Contact the Better Support Service about receiving resources and assistance
  • Step 3: Submit the required documents to the Better Support Service team
  • Step 4: Work with Better Support Service to receive your benefits and improve your child’s behavior through therapy

Who should I contact?

The team at Better Support Service is passionate about making health care easy and hassle free for parents. To get in touch with Better Support Service, learn more about the Behavior Analysis program, and find out what benefits you may be eligible to receive, you can contact us at (786)-534-7172. Take the next step to receiving your benefits and contact us today!

Physician’s Convention: Hotel Promo Codes and More.

strep throat convention

The International Physician’s Convention is Only Two Months Away!

Dates: November 1st-14th.

Travel and Hotel Coupon Codes:

As members of our association, you have access to exclusive discount codes that you can use on Hotels.com to save 20% off when booking your room at the Marriott.

Our Convention Theme: Strep Throat – A Fact of Life

Each year we take a closer look at one particular disease or ailment that affects the population at large. This year our speakers and presentations will be discussing strep throat.

If you need a primer, or at least a little refresher, on the situation, then here is a quick summary of Strep Throat:

Unfortunately, sore throats happen. You can eat all the right things, get plenty of exercise, wear a hat when it’s cold, and dry your hair when it is wet, but the truth is that sore throats will still happen. Whether it was the 5 year old at the bank who never covered his mouth when he coughed or the fact that you never washed your hands before leaving the birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese, as far as your immune system is concerned, it is only a matter of time before an infection will set in. Thankfully, a number of safe, easy, and reliable testing methods have been developed in recent years to aid clinicians in identifying these elusive agents of infection and help patients arrive at a speedy recovery. 

Let us take a closer look at these microbes. We will examine the characteristics of the bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes, a microbe responsible for strep throat, and become familiar with the various diseases associated with it. We will also discover current methodologies for testing and treating these infections in a clinical setting. With any luck we will be able to arm ourselves with perhaps the most effective weapon to date, knowledge. 

Signs and Symptoms

Surprisingly, it is our body’s immune response that can be attributed to many of the complications resulting from aggressive cases of strep throat, especially in cases of neglected or undertreated infections. Once the bacteria is recognized by our macrophages a cascade effect of cytokines or cellular signals are released that bring about a variety of changes. Not only are white cells called to the site of the infection whereby phagocytosis and complement fixation can take place (when bacteria are either engulfed by macrophages or tagged by protective proteins for certain death by osmotic implosion), but inflammation is also induced by those white cells that are called to serve. The distinct molecular attributes of the streptococcus bacteria, or antigens, are largely to blame. The antigens (in this case, membrane bound proteins and carbohydrates that elicit an immune response) on the surface of the bacteria kick the immune system into overdrive, producing chemical cytokines or cellular signals that induce white blood cell action and inflammation. This is what produces the characteristic soreness, swelling, and redness at the site of the infection. This not only makes swallowing difficult and painful but, lymph node glands can also begin to swell resulting in muscle ache in the neck. Fever and chills may also accompany the infection, as well as nausea and vomiting often in response to the persistent pain and discomfort. 

Sources of Infection

The bacteria can be spread from person to person by droplets from the cough or sneeze of an infected person. It is also possible to pick up the infection after touching contaminated surfaces like door handles or keyboards and then touching your eyes, nose, or mouth whereby the bacteria can easily gain access to the upper respiratory tract.  Strep throat caused by S. pyogenes typically effects children or anyone with a weakened immune system. The infection can clear up on its own, however in some cases; S. pyogenes infections can lead to further complications, such as glomerulonephritis, rheumatic fever, and scarlet fever, with outbreaks believed to have been first recorded as far back as the time of Hippocrates.

Behind The Scenes 

Typically when clinicians test for strep throat they are looking for the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes in order to diagnose streptococcal pharyngitis. That is not to say that other bacteria as well as viruses are not just as capable of causing upper respiratory infections, but when it comes to the characteristically red, inflamed sore throats, in this region of the world anyway,  it is S. pyogenes that usually gets called in for questioning. It is a group A, Beta-hemolytic strain of bead like bacteria that can produce mild to aggressive infections. “Beta hemolytic” refers to the ability of the bacteria to completely rupture (lyse) red cells on a culture plate, demonstrating a distinct, clear zone of red cell destruction. That zone of hemolysis is a diagnostically reliable behavior that clinical professionals look for when S. pyogenes or any group A strep is suspected. 

When S. pyogenes is suspected physicians will typically request that the patient have two throat swabs. One swab is for a rapid strep test, which is a quick screen for the bacterial antigen. The test utilizes an immunoassay “sandwich principle” and if that is negative than a culture is routinely run on the remaining swab.

Test Principle

Though there are a number of manufacturers of strep testing kits, they all tend to work off a similar “immunoassay” principle whereby a sought after antigen (in this case the S. pyogenes membrane bound carbohydrate) is bound to specific antibodies within the testing media that in conjunction with a color indicator form a unique complex that displays the presence of that antigen. The color change is then interpreted as a positive result. Since this test utilizes the high specificity of antigen-antibody binding, there is a low incidence rate of false positives. These tests are limited by sensitivity, meaning that an individual can in fact have a Strep infection that is below the detectible limits of the testing media. This is why it is a good practice for the physician to order a follow up culture for negative rapid strep screens.

Treatment and Prognosis

Antibiotics such as penicillin or amoxicillin are the usual course of treatment for bacterial sources of infection. Antibiotic treatments today have proven effective against Strep throat, with an often rapid patient recovery. However, in parts of the world where proper medical treatment is scarce S. pyogenes infections can prove to be very aggressive. A lack of antibiotic treatment in these cases also means that infected individuals remain contagious for longer periods of time during the course of their infections. 

Conclusion

While antibiotics often prove effective in the vast majority of cases and innovative techniques like immunoassays and follow up cultures provide relatively reliable means for detecting S. pyogenes infections, we must not waiver in our vigilance of these microbes.  Even something as common place as strep throat, if left unchecked can wage war on the body. Maintaining a healthy diet, reducing stress, and nurturing an active lifestyle can greatly improve your body’s ability for fighting off infections like Strep throat. It is however, in the hands of an informed and responsible public where the key to controlling the spread of such infections rests. 

Best Medical Management Practice Software Systems

Systems to Make Your Doctor’s Office Run Smoother.

There have been software systems for doctor’s offices since the late-80’s but they were expensive, and had questionable effectiveness.

But in the age of the smartphone, there is no reason why there can’t be a dead-simple and effective software system that can handle bookings, billings and more. These systems are the best of the best: they are evaluated based on the features they provide, how effective these features are, and cost.

1. NextGen Healthcare:

NextGen is hands-down the best all around healthcare management software around. It’s designed to run an office for just 1 Physician, or you can scale it up to 150 Physicians. The billing system includes a person database with demographic data that helps prevent any duplicate entries. It’s also set up to seamlessly adapt to new regulatory changes, such as the ICD-10 code set.

Visit their website:

www.nextgen.com/Products-and-Services/Ambulatory/Practice-Management

2. AthenaCollector

athenacollector - medical billing software
Athena Health’s medical billing software is the best at billing and collecting medical payments. The cloud-based service uses a billing rules engine to help it collect on billings from customers. Offices that use Athenacollector, at least according to their website, see an increase in bills paid on time, as well as a reduction in the average number of days from billing to payment.

View more On their website:
http://www.athenahealth.com/practice/athenacollector/medical-billing

3. eClinicalWorks Practice Management System:

eClinicalWorks has been around a long time, but it has adapted and improved to become one of the mainstays on our ‘top picks’ lists. The system is a very sophisticated scheduling software system that tracks multiple doctors and their patients, and can even include multiple office locations. You can customize it to include blocked-off hours, rules for recurring appointments, and more.

Official Website:

www.eclinicalworks.com/products-services/

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