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.


50th Annual Convention; Philadelphia, PA; 2024

Event Details

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Invited Paper Session #381
CE Offered: BACB
Increasing Adherence to Medical Procedures for People With Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Intellectual Disabilities
Monday, May 27, 2024
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Convention Center, 100 Level, 108 AB
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Patrick Romani (University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus)
CE Instructor: Daniele Rizzi, M.S.
Presenting Author: DANIELE RIZZI (Fondazione Oltre le Parole Onlus - Pescara)

While adherence with medical procedures and compliance during medical exams are important skills to learn, approximately one third of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and/or intellectual Disabilities (ID) have been found to exhibit noncompliance during basic medical procedures (Gillis et al. 2009). A skill deficit in this area may result in higher risk of injury and in the need of more intrusive procedures or physical and mechanical restraint. This talk will start from a review of Applied Behavior Analysis (A.B.A.) based literature related to the application of non aversive procedures to increase adherence to medical procedures, such as blood draw, dental care, routine exams, ECG etc. Procedures such as differential reinforcement without extinction, stimulus fading, gradual exposure, shaping will be discussed. Clinical applications of such procedures on adolescents and adults with ASD will be discussed, as well, with a focus on teaching students to report pain, preventing emotional negative responses and assure the assent of the participants during the procedures. Results of these interventions will be contextualized in a Quality of Life (QOL, Schalock et al. 2002) frame evaluating the impact of the results on the physical well being domain.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

The target audience for this symposium will be students, researchers, and practitioners that are interested in the integration between a Quality of Life model and ABA intervention, especially working with adolescents and adults with ASD and intellectual disabilities

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) Name and explain some non aversive procedures to increase adherence to medical procedures; (2) Explain why obtaining assent from participants is fundamental in increasing adherence to medical procedures; (3) Explain why it is important to integrate a Quality of Life model in ABA based interventions
DANIELE RIZZI (Fondazione Oltre le Parole Onlus - Pescara)
Daniele Rizzi is a BCBA and a Psychologist, working as Clinical Director for “la Casa dei Sogni-Fondazione Oltre le Parole Onlus”, a semi-residential center for adolescents and adults with ASD and intellectual disabilities in Pescara, central Italy. He serves as program coordinator and lecturer for A.B.A. post-university courses (VCS) at Consorzio Universitario Humanitas in Rome, teaching classes in experimental designs among other topics. He is involved as lecturer in the advanced training courses in A.B.A. and Autism organized by the Italian NIH (Istituto Superiore di Sanità). His main focus is in developing interventions for adolescents and adults using strategies based on Applied Behavior Analysis integrating a Quality of Life model. He presented scientific researches and gave talks both nationally and internationally. He is father of 2 wonderful little boys.



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