In the spotlight
Last year The Uncommon Thread achieved the highest number of therapy hours in its history. By expanding its reach - through schools, hospitals, county Care Management Units, and Camps - TUT exceeded 20,000 ABA therapy hours and helped more than 60 children across the state.
"Last year we were very focused on increasing the number of kids we could provide ABA therapy," says Greg Carr, Founder and CEO of TUT. "In order to accomplish this we took on kids in a variety of settings including: in-center, in-home, in-school, and in-community. It's very gratifying to see more and more kids improving, it's why we opened The Uncommon Thread."
School Districts: In 2014 alone, we added 9 new school districts including Somerset Hills, Readington Township, and Livingston among others. We are providing a multitude of services including ABA therapy, paraprofessional training, BCBA services, parent training, in-home supplemental services, ESY consultation and program management, temporary staffing assistance, on-line training vignettes, an image library, and parent teacher journal to name a few.
Hospitals and Pediatric Groups: Hospital and Pediatric groups play a very important role in the Collaboration. They are in effect, our "first responders". This year, 9 new groups joined the Collaborative as a result of the many grand rounds meetings our Outreach Department hosted.
At the meetings, we discuss the importance of a collaborative approach to treating children with autism. We also discuss the specifics and efficacy of Applied Behavior Analysis, as well as the importance of early detection, which is why hospital and pediatric groups are crucial to recovering a child.
Care Management Organizations: Last year we announced that the New Jersey Department of Children Services awarded us a contract to provide intensive in-home therapy. The recipients of these services are children with Medicaid insurance, whose families could not normally afford to pay for ABA therapy their kids so desperately need. As a result we have had to work closely with the county Care Management Organizations (CMO). The CMO's manage the cases and hire TUT to provide services. In 2014, we added 6 CMO's to the TUT Collaborative.
Camps: Routine is critical to preventing regression in children with autism. The summer typically interrupts routine, which is why we believe it's important to offer services that encourage generalization and prevent regression during the summer weeks. Last year, TUT executed agreements with two new camps and provided them with therapeutic counselors. The therapists executed on programs developed specifically to improve a child's social skills in all different situations.
Over the years, TUT has developed ABA Therapy best practices and leveraged modern technology to offer effective services in-center. From 2012-2014, we took our processes and suite of online tools and made them available to groups, in many different settings. Today, school districts across New Jersey are accessing our online professional training vignettes and using our suite of administrative tools. As a result, educators are increasing their teaching hours and improving the effectiveness of every teaching moment.
Professional ABA Therapy Training for Teachers and Paraprofessionals: We are pleased to offer a variety of staff trainings to educators including behavior therapists, paraprofessionals, and teachers. Our training is available online and on-site during in-service days. All of the available trainings are able to be modified in order to best meet the needs of the audience.
Parent Training: By leveraging modern technology, TUT has also expanded its parent training venues. In 2014, we developed secure, online access to ABA Therapy training vignettes, designed to teach parents the basics of ABA therapy. This will start rolling out in 2015. The Uncommon Thread has also made it a goal to increase the number of parent training sessions...a goal we believe is critical to improving outcomes.
Community Programming: In an effort to offer our kids opportunities to generalize skills, we initiated several community based programs. These include our music therapy program, circle-time at our local library, and Yoga.
Insurance Services: Navigating the insurance process is quite cumbersome. That's why The Uncommon Thread has dedicated staff to make it more simple. With very little information, we can investigate if a policy covers ABA therapy and the basic benefit information, for instance copays and deductibles. We take families through a step by step process until the assessment is complete and treatment is authorized. Today, we are a participating provider with Horizon BCBSNJ, Aetna, United Health Care, and Oxford.
In 2014, TUT hired a HR Administrator to meet the needs of our growing business. She is dedicated to developing the clinical team to meet the therapy requirements for each child. This year we doubled the size of our staff and we are reaching kids all over the state of New Jersey.
For an up-to-date listing of positions available, click here.