Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy is a widely recognized method used in treating behavioral conditions such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). However, the cost of this intensive therapy can often be a concern for parents. This article provides a detailed overview of the cost of autism treatment and ABA therapy in New Jersey and discusses various payment options available to parents of children with autism.

aba therapist and child

Why ABA Therapy is so Important for Children with Autism

ABA therapy is vital for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder because it provides a structured, personalized approach that significantly improves social, communication, and learning skills. By breaking down complex behaviors into smaller, more manageable tasks, ABA therapy helps children achieve milestones in their development that otherwise might be challenging. The therapy’s effectiveness lies in its ability to use positive reinforcement to encourage desirable behaviors, thereby reducing the occurrence of behaviors that can hinder a child’s progress. Its adaptability ensures that it caters to the unique needs of every child’s therapy, making it a crucial tool in helping children with autism lead more independent and fulfilling lives.

Understanding the Cost of ABA Therapy

The cost of ABA therapy can vary significantly depending on numerous factors including the child’s abilities, the location, and the number of hours needed. On average, one hour of ABA therapy provided by a board-certified ABA therapist costs $120. However, some sources suggest that the cost can range anywhere from $120 to $200 per hour. For intensive ABA therapy programs that require a minimum of 10 to 20 hours per week, the costs of a child’s ABA therapy can quickly add up.

Should you opt for full-day ABA therapy, which can be anywhere from 4 to 6 hours, the cost can range from $240 to $600 per day without insurance coverage. It’s important to note that these figures are averages and the actual cost may vary depending on specific circumstances.

Insurance Coverage for ABA Therapy

In most states, including New Jersey, most insurance plans and companies cover most of the cost of ABA therapy. The Affordable Care Act mandates that most health insurance providers and plans should cover mental and behavioral health services, including ABA therapy for autism. This means that families will only need to cover a portion of the cost out-of-pocket. Contact your insurance provider to find out more about your healthcare coverage.

In New Jersey, children are provided help until they turn 21. Therefore, parents in New Jersey can rest assured knowing there is financial assistance available to them for a significant portion of their child’s life.

Medicaid and ABA Therapy in New Jersey

For families who qualify, Medicaid’s insurance plan provides another vital source of financial assistance for ABA therapy in New Jersey. The state’s Medicaid program covers ABA therapy for children with autism, allowing families with limited financial resources to access necessary treatments. To be eligible, families must meet certain income criteria, and the child diagnosed with autism must be under the care of a physician or a licensed healthcare professional who deems the therapy medically necessary. Once approved, Medicaid covers the cost of ABA therapy, significantly reducing the financial burden on families. It’s essential for parents to contact their local Medicaid office to understand the application process, eligibility criteria, and coverage specifics in New Jersey.

Other Payment Options

In addition to insurance coverage, there are other payment options available for parents. Many ABA therapy providers offer different payment plans to help families manage the cost.

Furthermore, there are grants and scholarships available specifically for families seeking ABA therapy for their children with autism. Organizations such as Autism Speaks provide resources and information about these opportunities.

Several organizations offer grants and financial assistance specifically designed to help New Jersey residents afford ABA therapy for children with autism. While this list is not exhaustive, it highlights some of the key opportunities available:

  • Autism Family Services of New Jersey: This organization provides grants to families for services and support, including ABA therapy, to ensure that children with autism receive proper care and education.
  • The Doug Flutie, Jr. Foundation for Autism: Offers the Allison Keller Education Technology Program, which provides funding to families for educational purposes, including ABA therapy sessions, for individuals on the autism spectrum.
  • Act Today!: While this is a national organization, NJ families are eligible to apply for grants that can be used to cover ABA therapy costs. These grants are designed to support families that cannot afford the treatments that their insurance does not cover.
  • The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation: Focused on adults with autism, this NJ-based foundation provides grants and support for various programs, including behavioral therapies, aiming to enhance the quality of life for individuals with autism.

Parents and guardians in New Jersey are encouraged to reach out to these organizations directly to inquire about funding opportunities, eligibility requirements, and application processes.



ABA therapy, while highly beneficial for children with autism, can be costly. However, numerous payment options, including insurance coverage and various grants or scholarships, can significantly offset these costs. It’s crucial for parents to research treatment costs and explore all available avenues to ensure they can afford this essential therapy for their child.


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