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ACI Alliance Issues Pediatric Habilitation Position Paper

Background

American Cochlear Implant Alliance advocates for access to the continuum of cochlear implant care, which includes (re)habilitation needed for a child or an adult. Our State Champions assessed coverage of cochlear implantation under Affordable Care Act Marketplace plans. We found that CI was a covered service in nearly every plan we looked at. However, we had concerns relating to limitations on the number of therapy sessions allowed under such plans, which typically were limited to 30 sessions per year—regardless of the age of the patient. Such limits are often referred to as "therapy caps” and are increasingly common in private insurance plans.

Position Paper

The Board of Directors of ACI Alliance appointed a committee of therapeutic clinicians to develop a position paper on pediatric habilitation following cochlear implantation. The committee was encouraged to utilize an evidence-based approach and provide a document that would be helpful in documenting the need for appropriate habilitation post cochlear implantation. The attached Position Paper was authored by Hannah Eskridge, Amy McConkey Robbins, Kathryn Wilson, and Lindsay Zombek and approved by the ACI Alliance Board of Directors. We are grateful to the committee for this significant contribution to our field. Position Paper: Pediatric Habilitation Following Cochlear Implantation

How to Use the Position Paper

We intend for this paper to be utilized as a resource for health insurance providers (both public and private plans), early intervention professionals, families, pediatricians, and others involved in ensuring appropriate speech-language services for children with hearing loss. It may also be helpful to reference the Cochlear Implant Continuum of Care, available on our website under Cochlear Implant Information. We welcome your feedback on the Position Paper and your ideas for other position statements that may improve access to cochlear implant care.