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.


43rd Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2017

Event Details

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Symposium #396
CE Offered: BACB
Behavior Science in Gerontology: Addressing Barriers to Interdisciplinary Work
Monday, May 29, 2017
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Hyatt Regency, Capitol Ballroom 4
Area: CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Rachel Armstrong (Eastern Michigan University )
CE Instructor: Ashley Eden Greenwald, Ph.D.
Abstract: There is a growing need for effective behavioral interventions among the aging, particularly among those with neurocognitive disorders, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. Behavioral Gerontology is an interdisciplinary approach to treatment of these common aging conditions, however barriers to funding and practice can be limiting for Behavior Analysts hoping to work in this field. This presentation will review current and projected prevalence of dementia, and the regulation of provision of services by Behavior Analysts by the individual states. In some instances such as New York, Behavior Analysts are prohibited from working with any individuals who are not diagnosed with Autism. Systems for funding will be addressed from a state and federal level with regard to behavioral services in aging. Relationships with key stakeholders will be discussed with regard to integrating into current practice models within a community. Finally, the current presentation will address the nature of interdisciplinary work, distinguish it from consultation, introduce interdisciplinary models, and discuss how teamwork may be approached pragmatically when conceptual and theoretical perspectives differ.
Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): Behavioral Gerontology
Applied Behavior Analysis for an Aging America: Prevalence of Need, and Regulations Impacting Provision
DAVID DONNELLY (University of Rochester)
Abstract: While Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) has been widely accepted as an effective approach to treating individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), a growing need for effective behavioral intervention among the aging, particularly among those with dementia has gone unmet.. As licensure and accompanying regulations are adopted, it is in the interest of all Behavior Analysts and of those who advocate for effective treatment for the aging to answer efforts to narrowly define our scope of practice. This is best accomplished by objective demonstration of the potential of ABA to address the needs of the aging. The evidence of effectiveness must also be shared with families, practitioners, and regulators to ensure access to effective ABA treatment.
Overcoming Barriers to a Statewide Scale-Up of Behavioral Gerontology Services
ASHLEY EDEN GREENWALD (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: The Nevada Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports Technical Assistance Center received statewide funding in 2015 to develop and conduct a behavior analytic method of intervention and support with individuals with neurocognitive disorders. This funding came as a result of high needs for services amongst the aging population and limited resources for seniors needing additional caregiving services. In providing a new treatment approach, integrating into an existing community of practices can be challenging without the right resources and relationships. This presentation will discuss the importance of relationship building amongst community providers as well as the use of traditional media to reach target populations. Additionally, training a workforce to conduct this work in a reasonable timeframe can be challenging, as few graduate training programs in behavioral gerontology exist nationally. The unique skillset of a behavioral gerontologist will be reviewed with respect to working with an aging population but also a community with limited understanding of behavioral principles.
Interdisciplinarity: What? How?
RACHEL ARMSTRONG (Eastern Michigan University ), Claudia Drossel (Eastern Michigan University)
Abstract: Working with adults aged 65 and older requires competence as a member of an interdisciplinary team. Whether a client resides at home or in a group setting, treatment planning must be coordinated and integrated with other providers (such as physicians, nurses, psychiatrists, speech pathologists, occupational and physical therapists, pharmacists, social workers) and often implemented by stakeholders (families, administrators and staff of hospitals, skilled nursing, residential care, senior centers, or adult day centers). The current presentation defines interdisciplinarity, distinguishes it from consultation, introduces interdisciplinary models, and discusses how teamwork may be approached pragmatically when conceptual and theoretical perspectives differ. The goal is to offer strategies that foster strong collaborations yet take into account potential conflicts of epistemology, paradigms, and problem-solving perspectives.



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