November, 2006


This website posts information about programs that cover and provide funding for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices, also known as “speech generating devices” (SGDs). SGDs are essential tools to help people with severe communication disabilities meet their daily communication needs. They have been described as "vital" by federal judges, and "priceless" by their users.

People with very different backgrounds and wide range of experience need information about SGD funding. This web page will help SLPs, advocates, people with severe disabilities and their family members, funding program staff, and decision makers. It is designed to be of benefit to those who are confronting SGD funding questions for the first time, as well as those with prior funding experience. AACFUNDINGHELP.COM provides information useful to each of these diverse populations interested in SGD funding.

AACFUNDINGHELP.COM will be updated regularly to include new information and analyses about SGD funding.

AACFUNDINGHELP.COM is divided into four substantive areas:


SGD Funding Fast Facts provides the most general information about SGD funding.  This information will be useful for anyone who is considering SGD funding for the first time.

This includes information about the need and demand for SGDs; SGD costs to funding programs; history of SGD funding; SGD coverage vocabulary; and why SGDs are medically necessary.

SGD Funding Programs provides information about the largest public and private third party benefits programs that cover and provide funding for SGDs.  The programs described here are the most important funding sources for SGDs.

They include health based programs (Medicare; state Medicaid programs; Tricare; insurance; Dept. of Veterans Affairs); education programs; vocational rehabilitation programs; and telecommunications equipment distribution programs.

The AAC Report Coach offers SLPs a unique tool to guide them through the process of writing a funding report to support an SGD recommendation.  The AAC Report Coach was developed by Pam Mathy, Ph.D., Clinical Dir.,

Arizona State University.  The AAC Report Coach should be used after the SLP has conducted a complete SLP and AAC assessment, as outlined in the Medicare RMRP, using the procedures outlined in the Medicare Protocol. These are the three key tools SLPs will need to generate and present complete information to support SGD funding.

AAC Funding General Resources posts information useful to support funding by any funding source.  Letters from the AMA, American Academy of Neurology and American Academy of Physical Medicine &

Rehabilitation acknowledging the effectiveness and medical need of SGDs will be found here.  Information about “coding” of SGDs and current “fee schedules” also will be found here.


By using the aacfundinghelp.com website, the user understands and agrees that the information provided is intended for educational purposes only. Use of this information does not create a consulting relationship or a provider-patient or attorney-client relationship. This website is intended to provide general information about health-related matters and is not intended to create a practice of medicine or provide individual legal advice. Information posted on the website is subject to ongoing review, revision and update. The user should check the website for the most current version of any information. The user is also solely responsible for validation against other resources and for the decision to use the information.

The Assistive Technology Law Center, Duke University, Duke University Health System, Duke University Medical Center, the Division of Speech Pathology and Audiology, and all associated employees, staff, and providers accept no liability for the use of information from this website.

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