Evidence-Based Practice: Implications for SGD Funding Evidence-based practice (EBP) has the potential to be both sword and shield in regard to health benefits program funding for speech generating devices (SGDs). It can be a sword wielded by insurance companies, health benefits plans, and Medicaid programs to refuse SGD coverage and funding. These funding sources may ... Article
Article  |   September 01, 2007
Evidence-Based Practice: Implications for SGD Funding
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lewis Golinker
    Assistive Technology Law Center, Ithaca, NY
Article Information
Augmentative & Alternative Communication / Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Evidence-Based Practice
Article   |   September 01, 2007
Evidence-Based Practice: Implications for SGD Funding
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, September 2007, Vol. 16, 23-29. doi:10.1044/aac16.3.23
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, September 2007, Vol. 16, 23-29. doi:10.1044/aac16.3.23
Evidence-based practice (EBP) has the potential to be both sword and shield in regard to health benefits program funding for speech generating devices (SGDs). It can be a sword wielded by insurance companies, health benefits plans, and Medicaid programs to refuse SGD coverage and funding. These funding sources may claim that the evidence bases for SGD use in general, or SGD use by a specific population, is in some way inadequate. The augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) professional community also can use EBP as a shield to ensure SGD funding by developing key documents that support SGD effectiveness.
Time will tell whether EBP evolves into a barrier to SGD funding or a protector. But time is short. EBP is a genie let out of the bottle. It already has begun to have its effects. Because negative effects—funding sources using EBP to thwart SGD funding—are easier to set in motion, they are the first to be seen. It is much easier to claim sufficient evidence or evidence of a particular type is required, but does not exist, than it is to develop evidence. Already, we—professionals interested in AAC interventions—are at a disadvantage. Whether and when we as a community will be able to overcome this disadvantage will be based on the actions of individual clinicians, researchers, and university faculty.
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