Chris Collins is an RBT and the founder of ABAid Suncoast, a non-profit organization in Florida that helps remove barriers to entry into treatment for autism. Chris had a desire to create something that would offer direct support to clinics and provide financial assistance to families for diagnostics and treatment options. There are many children who can benefit from ABA services but because they don’t have an official diagnosis, insurance won’t cover their treatment, forcing families to pay out of pocket. Chris partners with treatment organizations in his community who refer families to him that are a good match for his program.
In a perfect world, Chris sees BCBA as much less of a fragmented modality. Many BCBAs are sole proprietors, so there can be a lack of established common best practices and communication between organizations. There is no shortage of children in need of services, but there is a shortage of providers, mainly due to burnout. This shortage can affect families as well, as frequent turnover means their children miss out on the consistency and stability that having the same practitioner provides. Chris’ advice for new BCBAs is to have patience. Being a BCBA is a fluid profession, and you often have to roll with the changes. If you’re dissatisfied with your job, try to advocate for yourself to turn things around before quitting, as the same common problems tend to exist across organizations. Know what your tolerance threshold is and always try to find the joy in what you do.
- How a non-profit organization is providing financial assistance for families in need of BCBA treatment.
- How a multidisciplinary treatment approach would greatly benefit children with autism and other disabilities.
- Why it’s important to advocate for yourself on the job as a BCBA.