Your voice counts with autism insurance reform!

As we step up and make our voices count by voting, I encourage you to make yourselves heard about insurance reform for autism as well. Paul Terdal has worked tirelessly to keep Oregon families updated on autism insurance reform at this site.

The state of Washington is going through major transformation as the Washington Supreme Court ruled that Regence pay for neurodevelopmental therapies (speech, occupational, and physical therapy) as a treatment for autism, without age limits. Regence had been providing coverage, but imposed an age limit of 6 beyond which coverage was denied whether medically necessary or not. View the official ruling here.

Unfortunately, this settlement with Regence applies to Washington only – in Oregon, Regence continues to issue denials of ABA, despite the Insurance Commissioner’s statements and draft bulletins declaring this to be illegal. The state of Oregon’s Judge Simon reached a similar conclusion with Oregon’s Mental Health Parity in AF v Providence case.  As Oregon continues to work on this issue, you can find bulletins here. Please stay tuned for calls to action as we unite to obtain coverage for autism in Oregon.

Thank you for your support, families.

Angie Kopshy, MM, MT-BC

Music Therapy Services of Portland

autism, movement, music therapy, music therapy for autism, neurologic music therapy, singing, special needs, Uncategorized

Summer Series III: Music therapy for two children with autism: BrainDance

For those of you who haven’t heard of BrainDance, I encourage you to check it out. BrainDance is a series of eight developmental movement patterns that healthy human beings naturally move through in the first year of life. Anne Green Gilbert, the developer of BrainDance, suggests that “cycling through these patterns at any age, daily or weekly while sitting or standing, has been found to be beneficial in reorganizing our central nervous system. Repeating these patterns over time may help us fill in any missing gaps in our neurological system due to birth trauma, illness, environment, head injury or not enough floor time as a baby.”

TymmeMusic Therapy Services of Portland had a child with autism who needed help getting up in the morning. I created this song and video to help from the moment she awakened. The video is power packed with Anne Green Gilbert’s concepts but put to music in a way that helps create predictability and structure. Give it a try with your child and do it alongside them. If they need assistance, I encourage you to help them out the first few times. Recruit the entire family, sing along as much as possible, and try this every morning for at least a week. You’ll have a structured group activity and fantastic modeling for your child.

Angie Kopshy

Angie Kopshy, MM, MT-BC

Music Therapy Services of Portland


Check out more videos created specifically for children with autism.


Music Therapy May Help Children with Autism

ASF Blog

By Marcela De Vivo, mother of a child with a severe disability and freelance writer who works with Oltarsh law firms.  She writes on immigration law, health and special education law and inclusion. 

Individuals of all ages and all abilities can benefit from music therapy. Previously, music therapy has been used to support emotional, cognitive and social development in many populations. Music therapy may help to promote wellness by managing stress, enhancing memory, and improving communication.

A 2004 study from the Journal of Music Therapy found that music in interventions used with children and teens with ASD can improve social behaviors, increase focus and attention, increase communication attempts (vocalizations, verbalizations, gestures, and vocabulary), reduce anxiety, and improve body awareness and coordination.

Many additional studies have found that children and adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) respond well to music. Often, individuals with autism respond positively to music when little…

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