Behavioral Treatment and Educational Intervention Received By Children with Autism in Ethiopia

Saturday, May 14, 2016: 11:30 AM-1:30 PM
Hall A (Baltimore Convention Center)
W. Zeleke and M. Chitiyo, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA
Background: Autism is one of the childhood disorders that has received a lot of attention in most developed countries. There is a clear imbalance of knowledge about autism spectrum disorders and its intervention worldwide.  Most of what we know about the epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of autism is based on research conducted in developed countries. A few studies conducted in various African countries report that the awareness of autism in Africa is beginning to improve and parents of children are striving to find service for their children with autism. That is certainly the case in Ethiopia too.  However, our knowledge about the current practice on autism intervention and how children with ASD and their parents received service in Ethiopia is limited due to lack of scientific studies.

Objectives:  The Autism treatment and service providers’ confidence survey was developed mostly based on the work of Green etal (2006) to identify strategies used in behavioral treatment and education of children with ASD in Ethiopia and to measure the level of confidence that the service providers have in providing the service for children with ASD

Methods:  Using convenience/ purposive sampling, 102 service providers (teachers, nurse, psychologist, social worker, special need educators and therapeutic care worker) completed the survey. Descriptive statistics and t-test used to analyze the results.

Results:  Skill based intervention such as self help skills, play, using rewards, art therapy, music, sand/clay therapy, and ABA was the most frequently used intervention, followed by Interrelationship based (modeling, direct instruction, social skills, social stories, experiential activity) intervention and intervention focused on Language and Communication base treatment.  Absence of pre-service and in-service training on autism found to be the common problem that the participants reported. Sixty five percent of the participants also rated their confidence on understanding and treating autism spectrum disorder low.

Conclusions: Result highlighted clear implication for pre-service and in-service training and the need for continued research to document the intervention strategies use in autism center in Ethiopia