Background and aims: Early intervention (EI) for young children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) must be resource-efficient while remaining effective; thus, clinicians are challenged to create and implement useful methods. Clinical evidence from community-based interventions that include reliable diagnoses, individual EI programs, along with comprehensive descriptions of participants, procedures, and participant outcomes can inform practice, translational research, and local policy. Parent-mediated EI for toddlers with ASD can promote positive developmental outcomes and lifelong well-being, but evidence of successful community uptake of research-based EIs is somewhat limited. The community-based, parent-mediated, evidence-informed QuickStart EI program aims to encourage toddlers’ early social communication, social interactions, and relationship-building, in a community clinic setting. We aim to (1) describe our adaptations to the evidence-based Parent-Delivered Early Start Denver Model and (2) present promising findings for toddlers with or at risk for ASD and their families who received QuickStart. We also intend to motivate a similar study of EI in real-world situations to advance evidence-based practice and create relevant dialogue and questions for research.
Areas of Research: Autism and Parent Coaching Intervention
Investigator, CHEO Research Institute