Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


48th Annual Convention; Boston, MA; 2022

Event Details

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Paper Session #508
CE Offered: BACB
Integrating Principles of Behavior Change and Public Health to Change Habits and Combat the Challenges of the COVID-19 Pandemic
Monday, May 30, 2022
12:30 PM–12:55 PM
Meeting Level 1; Room 104A
Area: CBM
Instruction Level: Basic
Chair: Richard Cook (Applied Behavior Medicine Associates of Hershey)
CE Instructor: Richard Cook, M.D.

Integrating Principles of Behavior Change and Public Health to Change Habits and Combat the Challenges of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Domain: Service Delivery
RICHARD COOK (Applied Behavior Medicine Associates of Hershey)

Moreso than in most medical problems and health crisis situations, leaders of many and diverse disciplines repeatedly cite “changes in behavior” as the mainstay of addressing the challenges of the Covid 19 pandemic. Given the lack of preventative, protective, and treatment modalities, the importance of behavior and habit change by individuals and society becomes the most prominent “tool in the box,” and allows for empowerment of individuals, families, organizations, and societies. This presentation highlights ways in which behavioral principles and techniques, especially when integrated with relevant principles of medicine and public health, can, and need to, be applied by clinicians and non clinicians to promote desired behaviors/habits including mask/PPE use (and techniques) and practicing social distancing, as well as remembering to NOT do many things we habitually do like shaking hands and holiday family gatherings. It applies as well to "private" behaviors of attitudes, opinions, knowledge (reality of the illness, safety of vaccines). The current pandemic serves as yet another opportunity for those most skilled in the principles and techniques of the management of behavior and development of habits to showcase the power of the discipline in making substantive desirable impacts on many phases of the COVID 19 pandemic, and the people affected by it.

Target Audience:


Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) discuss ways to leverage compensatory behaviors of the COVID-19 pandemic into improved baseline approaches in the "post pandemic" world (2) articulate approaches to identify the "behaviors" that become habits related to the most effective measures of preventing spreading and contracting of the Sars COVID-19 virus (3) advise others making COVID-19 pandemic related policies of the approaches of habit identification and development



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