The Evaluation of a Parent-Coaching Program Based on the Early Start Denver Model

Poster Presentation
Thursday, May 2, 2019: 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Room: 710 (Palais des congres de Montreal)
N. Abouzeid1, M. Rivard2, M. Boulé3, Z. Mestari3 and G. Regli4, (1)Psychology, Miriam Foundation/UQAM, Montreal, QC, Canada, (2)Psychology, Universite du Quebec a Montreal, Montréal, QC, Canada, (3)Psychology, UQAM, Montreal, QC, Canada, (4)Cocon Development, Montreal, QC, Canada
Background: In Quebec (Canada), it is common for families to wait over a year for a diagnostic evaluation. Once a child is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), families can then wait up to 3 years for Early Intensive Behavioural Intervention (EIBI), a critical service to avoid crystallization of symptoms and increase in problem behaviours. However, due to long waitlist families are often dealing with these challenges alone during the waiting period, not to mention those who will not access EIBI as some children will age out before accessing services. Interim measures such as parent-mediated interventions have been developed to support families while they are waiting for specialized and intensive services. The See Things my Way Parent coaching services has launched, in 2017, a pilot project to provide parent-coaching services based on the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM™) for families with children diagnosed with ASD within one month of diagnosis to support transition to more intensive services. The program aims to provide parents with tools and strategies to help them support their child on early developmental stages.

Objectives: The pilot study aims to investigate the efficacy of a parent-coaching program based on the Early Start Denver Model. More specifically, the satisfaction of the program as well as the effects on parental stress, perceived family’s quality of life and Parenting Sense of Competence will be evaluated.

Methods: 41 families of children aged between 28 and 44 months who were diagnosed with ASD/provisional ASD (with or without GDD) participated in a 14 week parent-mediated intervention which consisted of 1 parent group training, 2 assessments (pre & post), 1 Intervention Plan meeting and 8 Individual parental coaching sessions.

5 Instruments were used. Objective 1: parent satisfaction questionnaire (University of California at Davis, M.I.N.D. Institute), Therapeutic Alliance Scale (Davis & Carter, 2003). Objective 2: Parent measures: Parental Stress (PSI), Family Quality of Life (BEACH-FQOL), Parenting Sense of Competence (PSOC)

Analysis : Qualitative and quantitative (parametric: ANOVA and t-test)

Results: Preliminary results indicate that all children showed improvement on all developmental domains between the start and end of the program. Results on self-reported measures of parental self-efficacy reveal improvement. Based on parents’ responses, an increase in their quality of life was also experienced. These findings will support the effects and value of early parent-delivered interventions, based on ESDM.

Conclusions: Providing parent coaching services increased children learning opportunities and reduced the impact of the child’s deficits and challenges on the parents’ stress level and family’s quality of life while also improving the perceived parental self-efficacy. It is expected that these positive outcomes will persist and support children and their family when making the transition to EIBI. Conducting further research on this proposed model will provide additional empirical evidence in order to diversify the current array of services, replicate parent-coaching services and bridge the gaps in the broader community, in and beyond Quebec.