FUNDING RESOURCES

There are different methods to get a communication device funded though the most common way is through insurance. However, there are devices funded by scholarships, grants and lending programs. 

 

This list is not all-inclusive, but it’s a great place to expand your research.

  • Private insurance (e.g. Kaiser Permanente, Sharp, Scripps Health)

  • Medicaid

  • Grants 

  • Lending Programs

Private Insurance

The availability of private insurance reimbursement depends on the scope of a particular policy's coverage, although more and more private insurers are following Medicare's/Medicaid’s lead. Consult the private health insurer's policy manual for clarification of coverage parameters.

Medicaid

Review the Medicaid policy to determine whether these kinds of services are covered benefits. Below is a general overview.

  • Medicaid will cover devices/services as long as they can be justified as medically necessary (even though they may be educationally necessary as well)

  • From an individual’s doctor or therapist, Individuals must acquire a medical justification letter and/or prior authorization for the durable medical equipment item. Then they can choose a Medicaid approved DME supplier and provide them with the medical justification letter.

  • Sometimes, an assessment is required to establish the individual’s DME need; this can be completed by a doctor, or if the need is communication, this may be completed by a Speech and Language Specialist.

  • The Medicaid agency cannot unreasonably delay a prior authorization decision by repeatedly asking for additional information. If this happens, request a fair hearing on the basis that the Medicaid agency has failed to act with reasonable promptness in deciding the individual’s eligibility for the equipment or communication device.

Grants

Please note that grant availability can change and is dependent on funding. This is not an exhaustive list.  These are some suggestions to get started on the search for getting a device funded. 

AbleNet 

Apraxia Kids

Autism Care Today

Communication Grants Specific to Grossmont Union High School District in El Cajon, CA

Danny's Wish

Elks Lodge

First Hand Foundation

Forbes AAC

iTaalk Autism Foundation

National Autism Association

Small Steps in Speech

United Healthcare Children's Foundation

Voice Options Program

Lending Programs

California: Assistive Technology Portal

  • The purpose of the device loan program is to let potential AT users try-out devices prior to purchase, have access to a backup system when their device is in for repairs and/or have access to a device while waiting for their device to be delivered. Individuals can try out all devices for up to 5 weeks for free.

 

United Cerebral Palsy San Diego

  • UCP is a nationwide charity with chapters in many states. UCP serves people with all disabilities, not only Cerebral Palsy and has a lending loan library for equipment loans.