All Sessions are now Available on Demand
Click the “Watch Now” buttons in any of the sessions below access each session. Or purchase the entire AIS session recordings bundle for $499.
Meet fellow attendees while enjoying your favorite beverage. The event will focus on creating meaningful connections in small groups to facilitate networking and learning.
Sponsored by Ziegler
Keynote: Jim Hogan
Speaker: Jim Hogan, VP of Accessibility at Google
Jim Hogan is an innovator, a human rights activist and a strong representative of what is possible for autistic individuals. Jim found his passion for computer science and innovation at a young age and has since worked in leadership positions for over 30 years. Throughout his career, Jim has advocated for neurodistinct employees by helping human resources departments better understand their needs. With his powerful voice and advocacy for acceptance, he has led the way for hundreds of autistic individuals who entered the workforce behind him.
Jim wears multiple hats at Google including his roles as the Principal Innovation Strategist, Healthcare & Life Sciences and as Vice President, Accessibility in Technology for Google's Disability Alliance Employee Resource Group.
Keynote: Dexter Braff
Impact of the Pandemic on Sponsor Transactions in ABA
Speaker: Dexter Braff, The Braff Group
In the two years since Covid rocked the country -- and many autism service providers -- much has changed. And yet, much has remained the same. Buyers still want in. Valuations are still extraordinary. Private equity is still driving the market. In this session, we will closely examine the current micro trends in autism mergers and acquisitions and the macro-economic conditions that undergird them. We will discuss where the sector currently stands in its consolidation cycle and how it may impact where it's headed -- the buyers, the targets, the strategies, the timing, and ultimately, valuation.
Morning Session 1A: Essential of Revenue Cycle Management
Moderator: Mike Freytag, SimiTree
- Kevin Taggart, Mertz Taggart
- Thomas John, Plutus Health Inc
- Michele Silcox, ABA Therapy Billing and Insurance Services
- Ryan Gilliam, ElementRCM
Handling of medical claims from coding, billing, cash posting, and AR & denial management can be a complex topic with significant nuances for ABA. Join these experts in discussing the essentials of Revenue Cycle Management, how to position your organization for success in showcasing your RCM efficiency when preparing for acquisition, and overall suggestions for best practice.
Morning Session 1B: Best Practices for Growing Your Practice: Digital Discoverability, Online Reputation Management & Other Growth & Expansion Strategies
Moderator: Sara Litvak, Behavioral Health Center of Excellence
- Anna Bullard, Behavioral Health Center of Excellence
- Daniel Gemp, Dreamscape Marketing
- Natesh Kumar, Empower Behavioral Health
- Rick Loewenstein, TeamGame Advisors
As the demand for autism care continues to climb so too does the value of the businesses that provide that care. Because of this increase in demand, many operators in this relatively young and unsophisticated sector of mental healthcare are unprepared to capitalize on the opportunities now in front of them to scale their business for maximum growth or sale.
In 2022, the way we drive growth and value at any scale is creating a plan to connect with the highest converting care seekers while lowering the cost per conversion. With most care research beginning online, effective connection means capturing the top digital real estate positions where the vast majority of these conversions are taking place.
This presentation will discuss the state of autism care marketing, the foundations of a performance driven digital marketing strategy, and the specific opportunities for growth and expansion in 2022.
Morning Session 2A: Recent Development In The Mental Health Parity Laws: What You Need To Know For Improving Reimbursement
Speaker: John Mills, Nelson Hardiman Healthcare Lawyers
In the past several years there have been significant efforts at both the state and federal level to strengthen mental health parity legislation. For example, California Senate Bill 855 requires certain health plans and insurers to expand access to mental health and substance use disorder (“SUD”) services. At the federal level, Congress recently enacted the Strengthening Behavioral Health Parity Act, which takes an important step towards strengthening parity requirements concerning non-quantitative treatment limitations in federally regulated health plans.
This presentation will delve into the most notable existing and prospective legislation, with an emphasis on California’s SB 855. The presenter will address the expansion of mental health coverage, the limitations on utilization review, the new requirement on payers to arrange for out-of-network services and other changes that improve the likelihood that providers can get paid for their services. The presenter will discuss the ongoing and anticipated disputes and lawsuits arising from the new legislation.
An attorney dedicated to helping providers get reimbursed for their services, the presenter also will discuss key steps that providers can take now to leverage the parity legislation and other legal developments to maximize their reimbursement from commercial health plans and insurers.
Morning Session 2B: Leveraging Tech to Improve Patient and Employee Engagement
Moderator: Sasha Shtern, Goally
- Vijay Ravindran, Floreo
- Josh Sleeper, Trumpet Behavioral Health
- Alden Romney, Opya
Sasha Shtern, CEO of Goally, will lead a conversation around using technology in an ABA setting. Come learn how you can use technology to improve your delivery and patient experience. We'll include topics of telemedicine in video and virtual reality.
Afternoon Session 1: Payor Perspectives & Progress on Alternative Payment Models
Moderator: Sara Litvak, Behavioral Health Center of Excellence
- Richard Janczewski, Aetna, a CVS Health Company
- Yagnesh Vadgama, Magellan Health
- Katherine Wooten, New Directions Behavioral Health
- Dr. Tiffany Hodges, Optum Health
Join our panel of experts to discuss the challenges and opportunities to advance a value based care for applied behavior analysis that maintains focus on patient progress. Hear how payors plan to leverage relationships with providers to help move them into alternative payment models that close the health equity gap for individuals with autism.
Afternoon Session 2A: Selecting an Investment Banker
Moderator: Kathleen Stengel, NeurAbilities Healthcare
- Benjamin Matz, Huron Consulting Group
- Chris Rogers, Ziegler
- Jon Hill, TripleTree
Choosing a qualified, experienced investment banker with relevant transaction experience to represent your company might be the most important decision to ensure a successful outcome. If you choose poorly, the downside is serious, as even well-meaning bankers can derail a deal with bad advice, poor judgment, or a misrepresentation of their skill-sets. In this presentation, we will cover 6 key themes business owners / CEOs should consider when choosing an M&A advisor, and what qualifies as a good answer from an advisor. These are critical in the process of how to choose an investment banker.
Afternoon Session 2B: Trends Driving the Future of Telehealth in ABA Services
Moderator: Kathleen Karimi, Behavior Change Institute
- Dr. Joy Pollard, Behavior Change Institute
- Bryce Miler, Trumpet Behavioral Health
- Kristine Rodriguez, Autism Learning Partners
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), telehealth utilization spiked by more than 154% in late March of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019. Does the future for telehealth remain positive? To help cope with the social distancing measures put in place to help flatten the curve of COVID-19 infections, the healthcare industry had to adapt quickly. Telehealth became a saving grace for clinics at the height of the pandemic in search of a way to provide the same quality of care services while minimizing the spread of the coronavirus. Key trends have emerged surrounding the use of the technology that will continue to shape the future of telehealth services. This panel will discuss key trends in driving the future of telehealth in ABA.
Afternoon Session 3: Structuring Operations for Value-Based Care for ABA Providers
Speaker: Kathleen Stengel, NeurAbilities Healthcare
Interest in value-based care programs is on the rise in all areas of healthcare. Models of care delivery that account for quality care, progress toward outcomes, efficiency, and cost savings are the holy grail for all behavior health programming. Specifically for autism therapy and ongoing care, the goal of VBC models over the last several years has been to define the measures for treatment that can demonstrate progress or overall outcomes over time. Execution of VBC models requires organizations to be prepared to collect ongoing data across their populations in a systematic manner. This talk will discuss a basic framework for assuring administrative and operational structure to collect, track, and analyze data required for VBC payment models.
Sponsors VIP Reception
Keynote: Jonathan Mueller
Strengthening Organizations Culture as You Grow
Speaker: Jonathan Mueller, Ascend Behavior Partners
How do you strengthen your organization's culture as you grow?
Conventional wisdom says that the bigger an organization gets, the worse the culture gets. I disagree. Being successful scaling culture means constantly growing yourself as a leader, engaging in meaningful feedback conversations with your team, testing hypotheses, and serving as your organization's CRO (Chief Reminding Officer) of your values. I'll share the framework we've used at Ascend to strengthen our culture as we've doubled in size every year the past 4 years: the metrics we look at, the conversations we have with our team, the training, and the ways we're constantly pushing ownership of our culture to our front-line teams.
Morning Session 1: Compensation & Turnover: Implication on Industry Growth and Access to Care
Speaker: David Cox, Behavioral Health Center of Excellence
Compensation and staff turnover are two major pain points for every provider. Although they are not always strongly related, both have a tremendous impact on the financial health and sustainability of ABA organizations. The purpose of this presentation is twofold. First, we describe industry trends in hourly pay rate, salary, and annualized turnover percentage for ABA organizations completing the BHCOE evaluation process and for the staff positions of direct therapists/RBTs, case supervisors/BCBAs, and clinical directors. Second, to present data and discuss the findings of two studies wherein we attempted to predict staff turnover using data about organizational systems and characteristics. Previous research, including a recent publication from BHCOE, suggests that monetary compensation, though important, may not be the most important predictor of voluntary turnover compared to organizational factors such as career development opportunities and satisfaction with supervisory and managerial support. However, monetary compensation can influence recruitment and job satisfaction. ABA organizations can leverage the information in this presentation to understand how their company compares to the industry in average hourly monetary compensation and employee turnover rates.
Morning Session 2A: Retention and People Management
Speaker: Sarah Trautman, Defy Community
The success, or failure, of any autism business is dependent on human capital. Having an incredible clinical model or efficient systems doesn't matter if you don't have the human capital to provide services or support your operations. Cultivating a culture that prioritizes the well-being of the humans in your organization is imperative if you want to recruit and retain talent in an industry where there are NOT enough professionals available to meet current demand. This session will focus on strategies to retain talent, respond to the great resignation, and cultivate a culture of team member satisfaction.
Morning Session 2B: Fireside Chat — BHCOE & Cigna's Strategic Partnership: The Road Ahead for APM’s in Behavioral Health
Speakers: Sara Litvak and Dr. Darren Sush
BHCOE & Evernorth recently announced their partnership to develop a value-based care framework for their ABA network. Through this partnership, Evernorth and BHCOE will work to establish foundational measures for ABA treatment. These measures will help patients, caregivers, providers, and health plans better assess the overall quality of delivered care, and assess patient outcomes as aligned with national health care quality standards in behavioral health.
Evernorth behavioral health clients, as well as Cigna health plan customers who receive health coverage through their employer or marketplace exchange plans, will be among the first to benefit from these standard performance metrics. This agreement comes at a critical time for ensuring access to quality services for individuals with autism. This fireside chat will explore the partnership and discuss implications for ABA organizations and the families they serve.
Morning Session 3A: Clinical Quality & Creating Sustainable Outcomes with Long-Term Results
Moderator: Dr. Ronit Molko, Learn Behavioral
- Kelly Bermingham, People’s Care Behavioral Health, Redwood Family Care Network
- Dr. Ellie Kazemi, Behavioral Health Center of Excellence
- Katherine Wooten, New Directions Behavioral Health
- Dr. Gina Chang, Autism Learning Partners
The purpose of monitoring and reporting quality outcomes is to place the focus of care on outcomes that matter to the patient and their loved ones. Although everyone agrees that measuring quality outcomes is important, there are several challenges in collecting this data and little consensus on what exactly should be measured for individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) receiving behavioral services. In this panel, we will discuss behavioral service providers’ and payors’ perspectives of the measures that influence quality outcomes and the logistics of monitoring and reporting such results. We will also discuss process versus outcome measures and current frameworks for assessing patient improvement because of behavioral services.
Morning Session 3B: Valuation, Due Diligence, & Compliance in a Post-Pandemic World
Moderator: Jon Krieger, Calex Partners
- Lani Fritts, Former CEO of Kadiant
- Sara Litvak, Behavioral Health Center of Excellence
- Olex Kaltsev, Elemy
Buyers and Sellers are at an impasse. In a COVID-inspired spiral of unknowns, there is a lack of clarity on deal flow in a post-pandemic world. Despite it all, the health care economic policy issues that have boosted a run on health care service providers remain. In this webinar, we will explore how valuations have fluctuated, diligence has shown itself and what compliance and diligence looks like today. The Coronavirus has impacted mergers and acquisitions broadly, and behavioral health specifically is no different. Whether you are content staying put or see yourself as a seller now, or in the future, (or if you’re unsure which you should be), this presentation will help you set expectations.