Aetna and ACES enhance relationship and create Aetna’s first Institute of Quality for autism

Collaboration to immediately expand access to industry-leading autism care and services from ACES for Aetna members in 2021

WOONSOCKET, R.I. and IRVINE, Calif. – August 31, 2021 – Aetna®, a CVS Health® company (NYSE CVS), and ACES 2020, LLC (“ACES”), today announced an enhanced relationship to improve the quality of life for individuals and families impacted with autism spectrum disorder or other special needs. Through a new national agreement, effective August 1, 2021, Aetna members now have access to value-based autism care from ACES clinical providers.

The companies also announced the creation of Aetna’s first Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) Institute of Quality (IOQ). The IOQ will enable both parties to continue expanding access to quality autism care given ACES’ industry-leading clinical model and Aetna and ACES’ shared commitment to reach and serve more individuals and their families affected by autism.

Aetna’s IOQ designation helps members choose consistent quality care. Aetna recognizes facilities in its network that offer specialized clinical services for certain health conditions and are selected for designation based on excellence in care, commitment to continuous improvement, meeting certain standards of quality and cost efficiency. ACES provides ABA and ancillary services to individuals and families impacted with autism or other special needs throughout their lifespan and has an established track record of outcomes.

Kristin Farmer, Founder and CEO of ACES, said, “ACES is proud of our longstanding commitment to the autism community. The designation of ACES as Aetna’s first Institute of Quality for Autism confirms ACES as a leading care model to serve that community. We are excited to collaborate with Aetna on expanding access to quality care to as many individuals and families impacted by autism as possible and are aligned in our vision to set the standard for autism care in America.”

Cara McNulty, DPA, President, Behavioral Health and Employee Assistance Program, Aetna, said, “Our collaboration with ACES on Aetna’s first-ever autism Institute of Quality is a key part of our commitment to improving access to quality mental health care. The quality and effectiveness of ACES’ clinical care model for ABA is industry leading and together we’ll improve outcomes for more families and their communities. Our members deserve quality, value-based autism care coordinated with the well-being of the whole family in mind.”

Aetna is creating solutions that address holistic health and the unique needs of members, including specific conditions such as autism. By creating targeted solutions, Aetna increases access to quality care by promoting solutions that are meaningful, relevant and easy to navigate.

“We’re delivering a differentiated provider network that’s consumer-focused,” said Angie Meoli, SVP, Network Strategy and Provider Experience, Aetna. “Through our enhanced relationship with ACES, members with autism will have access to quality care that addresses their unique needs and is supported by a value-based arrangement that keeps care focused on patient outcomes and affordability.”

To learn more about Aetna’s first Applied Behavioral Analysis Institute of Quality, visit Aetna’s website.

About Aetna
Aetna, a CVS Health business, serves an estimated 34 million people with information and resources to help them make better informed decisions about their health care. Aetna offers a broad range of traditional, voluntary and consumer-directed health insurance products and related services, including medical, pharmacy, dental and behavioral health plans, and medical management capabilities, Medicaid health care management services, workers’ compensation administrative services and health information technology products and services. Aetna’s customers include employer groups, individuals, college students, part-time and hourly workers, health plans, health care providers, governmental units, government-sponsored plans, labor groups and expatriates. For more information, visit

About CVS Health
CVS Health is the leading health solutions company, delivering care in ways no one else can. We reach more people and improve the health of communities across America through our local presence, digital channels and our nearly 300,000 dedicated colleagues — including more than 40,000 physicians, pharmacists, nurses, and nurse practitioners. Wherever and whenever people need us, we help them with their health — whether that’s managing chronic diseases, staying compliant with their medications, or accessing affordable health and wellness services in the most convenient ways. We help people navigate the health care system — and their personal health care — by improving access, lowering costs and being a trusted partner for every meaningful moment of health. And we do it all with heart, each and every day. Learn more at

About Autism Comprehensive Educational Services (ACES)
ACES is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for individuals and families impacted with autism or other special needs. Founded in 1996 by Kristin Farmer, ACES provides comprehensive, professional services to maximize individuals’ potential in the home, school, clinic and community using accepted teaching and ABA therapeutic methodologies. ACES operates in more than 50 markets in eight states, serving thousands of clients in Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and Washington with a long track record of outcomes. Learn more at