According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 1 in 6 children will be diagnosed with a developmental disability such as autism. This makes the condition more common than pediatric cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the main treatment methodology recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the U.S. Surgeon General and the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health for treating individuals with developmental disabilities. However, the highly limited availability of credentialed ABA providers – there are approximately only 25,000 Board Certified Behavior Therapists worldwide – severely restricts potential benefits for the hundreds of millions of affected individuals. Rethink was founded with a mission to address this challenge.
To effectively and affordably meet the treatment needs of this growing segment of the population, Rethink determined the only way to deliver clinical best practice treatment in a scalable way was to leverage technology to train whoever was caring for the individual. Noting extensive research on the effectiveness of video modeling for training in fields such as medicine and the military, the Company decided to combine this established method of instruction with the proven and medically-recommended ABA treatment behavioral health service providers methodology. The visionary Company then created an online training, treatment and support system for patients and their caregivers.
An Industry-Leading Platform
Through its three divisions, each with distinct versions of its online program, Rethink is the leading software platform serving the three key market segments that offer care to individuals with developmental disabilities:
- Education – Rethink offers the leading special needs management platform for public school districts. Serving all students with special needs as well as those who require behavioral support, the Rethink program is used across all 50 states by hundreds of districts ranging from large urban systems like New York City, San Francisco, Dallas and Denver to small, rural districts. The Rethink program allows districts to fully meet Federal IDEA requirements as well as a variety of state-based legislative mandates to provide adequate education to students with special needs.
- Employee Benefits – Rethink offers the industry-leading training and support platform for employees caring for dependents with a developmental disability. Its clients range from small employers to those with over 500,000 employees. Research has shown clearly the adverse impact of caring for a dependent with a developmental disability – from over twice the rates of anxiety and depression to thousands of dollars annually in lost productivity. Indeed, over half of caregivers work fewer hours or leave the workforce to accommodate the needs of their child. The Rethink program helps support these employees, directly impacting their productivity in the workplace, and helps employers create a culture of wellness for their entire workforce.
- Behavioral Health – Rethink offers the industry-leading practice management platform for behavioral health service providers specializing in individuals with autism and related disorders. The software helps improve treatment outcomes by simplifying and automating work flows, improving staff training, and ensuring standardization and delivery of clinical fidelity of care’.
Scalable and Fully Integrated Solution
Rethink began by offering treatment tools, training and support for individuals with autism, who account for 1 in 68 of the population, as well as their caregivers. They then leveraged their clinical expertise and best-in-class platform to expand beyond autism to broader developmental disabilities, including conditions such as developmental delays, intellectual disabilities, speech and language problems, Down Syndrome, ADD/ADHD and a range of problem behaviors. This demographic constitutes 1 in 6 of the population. One of the biggest challenges early on was securing the approval of the clinical/academic community. They had to convince them that a technology-driven solution could be applied by a caregiver to an issue that historically was addressed with on-site intervention by a trained and certified clinician. To address this issue, Rethink made sure to involve leading clinicians and academics in the program’s development , as well as secure the support of leading advocacy groups and related not-for-profits,.
Rethink is unique in the marketplace for offering a scalable and fully integrated solution to address the needs of both individuals with a developmental disability and their caregivers. Rethink’s employees share a deep passion for making a social impact and drive continuous innovation in its products. The Rethink program touches millions of lives and is being implemented by government agencies, public and private health organizations, Fortune 500, public school districts, and families across the United States and around the world.
A Serial Entrepreneur and Prominent Innovator
Mr. Daniel A. Etra is the Co-founder of Rethink and currently serves as its CEO. He has over two decades of international business experience, including 15 years as a serial entrepreneur.
Mr. Etra was previously the CEO of R.E.R. International, which he also cofounded. The company is a global supplier of printed materials to the retail industry. He has won numerous awards including the Inc. 500 Award and the SmartCEO Future 50 Award. Mr. Etra is also a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO). Born and raised in New York City, he is active in a variety of children’s causes and volunteers with organizations such as NY Cares and Memorial Sloan- Kettering Cancer Center.
Helping Millions of Individuals
With roughly 450 million individuals with a developmental disability globally, there is a tremendous need for Rethink. The company looks forward to continuing to expand as the premier program supporting this growing population and their caregivers, no matter where they are located around the world. Rethink is also broadening its services to help individuals with developmental disabilities as they enter adulthood, including initiatives aimed at helping them find employment and assisting them in the workplace.