ASA's 37th National Conference on Autism Spectrum Disorders (July 13-15, 2006)

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Friday, July 14, 2006: 3:30 PM-4:45 PM
Providence Ballroom I
#2023- Using Interactive Video Teleconferencing to Support Families of Young Children with Autism
This session describes a federally-funded research project linking families and professionals via interactive telehealth technology. Enabling families to receive live in-home support, the system helps professionals provide additional training and feedback to the families from remote locations. Data on child behavior change, parent accuracy of implementation, quality of life, parenting stress, and parent/professional satisfaction with the technology will be presented. The generalized application of this service delivery model to support both caregivers and providers will also be discussed.

Presenters:Jeffrey F. Hine, M.Ed., BCBA, The Celeste Foundation, Senior Behavior Analyst - Mr. Hine received his Masters degree in Early Childhood Special Education emphasizing behavior analysis and autism intervention from Vanderbilt University. He is a board certified behavior analyst, a certified early childhood special educator, and has experience in a variety of homes, classrooms, residential facilities, and rehabilitation centers. He has previously worked with the Vanderbilt Behavior Analysis Clinic in Nashville, TN and the University of California at Santa Barbara Autism Research and Training Center. His research interests include early intervention strategies for children with autism and their families and has presented on topics including teaching children with autism through video modeling.

Danielle R. Liso, Ph.D., BCBA, The Celeste Foundation, Clinical Director - Dr. Liso received her Masters degree in Severe and Profound Disabilities, with an emphasis on autism, from the Johns Hopkins University. She received her Ph.D. in Early Childhood Special Education and Positive Behavior Supports from Vanderbilt University. Dr. Liso is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and a certified special educator who has also worked as an in-home therapist and consultant. Her primary research interest is training families to work with children with autism. Some of Dr. Liso's previous conference presentations include: Florida Association for Behavior Analysis (FABA), Association for Behavior Analysis (ABA), and the Division of Early Childhood (DEC).

This federally funded research project investigates the feasibility of providing early intervention services to children with autism and their families through interactive video, or telehealth, technology. The presenters will provide a brief history of the Celeste Foundation and the National Institute of Telehealth where the research is based.

Presenters will explain the rationale and purpose of the current research study, including the primary expected outcomes:

Demonstrate that providing telehealth services offers direct therapeutic benefits to children with autism, as measured by the ability of caregivers to meet established therapy objectives and by the levels of satisfaction attested by the families.

Demonstrate that telehealth services can provide satisfactory support to reduce family stress by enhancing parent skills and access to consultation and training.

Demonstrate the cost effectiveness of interactive video as a tool for facilitating the provision of therapeutic services for children with autism.

Expand and refine telehealth research related to the treatment of autism, particularly in the area of using interactive video technology to administer “Early Intervention” strategies for children.

They also will describe the empirically driven family training curriculum that is guided by tenets of the following philosophies: Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), Positive Behavior Support (PBS), Responsive Interaction (RI), Routines-based Instruction (RBI), and Visual and Environmental Supports (VS/ES). Participants will learn the four key elements, communication support, prevention strategies, teaching strategies, and response strategies, which constitute the basis of the training week. Presenters also will describe the parent training and support model administered by the research professionals, which includes didactic instruction, role-play and modeling, immediate and delayed feedback, and pre/post content assessment. In addition, the presenters will discuss how the telehealth technology facilitates prompt and efficient delivery of service to a variety of home contexts, a discussion that will be enhanced by a live demonstration of a family/professional interaction via the same telehealth system (designed by Cnow, Inc.) used in the research. In addition, rationale and participant descriptions, research questions, independent and dependent variables, and parent/child outcome measures will be described for the current research project. A summary of the findings collected to date and their implications will be presented. Finally, the presenters will discuss the ways in which remote service delivery can be applied across related interest areas.

Participants will learn the following: The 5 philosophies of the Celeste Foundation Parent Training Curriculum

The 4 elements of the Celeste Foundation Parent Training Curriculum

The advantages and limitations of telehealth technology as a vehicle for service delivery

The ways in which telehealth technology may positively impact child and family outcomes

The capabilities of the telehealth system of service delivery to application in a variety of human service professions

Potential Contributions to the field: The Celeste Foundation curriculum focuses on instruction in critical skills: parent/child interactions, preventative measures, instruction in replacement skills, and constructive responding to behavior. These skills are sustained via telehealth consultations.

The individualized instruction used during parent training and follow-up telehealth support focuses on building family capacity for problem-solving and for analyzing behavior.

Remote service delivery through the telehealth system ensures that parents take the lead in decision-making and implementing best practices with their child.

Telehealth technology promotes best practice through readily available, live, and less intrusive service delivery.

Telehealth service delivery allows interpersonal interactions between families and professionals from a wide variety of fields, including behavior analysis, special education, speech pathology, occupational and physical therapy, psychology, and medicine.

Telehealth technology is cost effective; it allows professionals to access a large number of families without the need to travel.

Telehealth technology increases the availability of professionals and the efficiency of service delivery.

The model provides consultative support within the context of natural parent/child interactions and routines without the intrusion of a “stranger,” thereby creating a less contrived observational setting.

Remote service delivery allows for increased supervision of clinical staff and collaboration of service recommendations across disciplines.

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