In 2017, the Autism Program at Boston Medical Center (BMC) launched its Autism Friendly Initiative in an effort to improve the hospital experience for patients with ASD from a systems-level. This presentation will discuss the evolution of the Autism Friendly Initiative as it works to develop best practices for improving the patient experience for those with ASD. These practices relate to environmental adaptation, provider education, and individualizing patient care.

In addition to reviewing how the Autism Program built its Autism Friendly Initiative framework via ethnographic studies, focus groups, and stakeholder engagement, this presentation will also outline how various interventions have been implemented hospital-wide. Our sensory toolboxes, which assist in easing the sensory overstimulation that may manifest in a hospital encounter, as well as our Autism Support Checklist (ASC), which helps to ensure that providers are aware of the specific triggers, communication styles, and reinforcements that are applicable to each patient, are just two examples of such interventions.

This presentation will also discuss the challenges that any healthcare setting might face in building an Autism Friendly practice. Participants will have an opportunity to discuss the barriers that they foresee in creating such an environment at their respective sites, and how to overcome them. Participants will also learn how to collect and measure data related to this work in order to ensure that impacts are sustained. 

Visit the program website for more information: https://www.bmc.org/visiting-us/autism-friendly-initiative

 This program is open to primary care physicians, pediatricians, pediatric nurse practitioners, nurses, physician assistants, social workers, child mental health professionals and family nurse practitioners.

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Shari King, MA

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Pamela Palmucci

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Lauren Bartolotti Busa, MA

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Alexander Friedman, MPH

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Sarabeth Broder-Fingert, MD, MPH

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Marilyn Augustyn, MD

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CME Accreditation
Boston University School of Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Boston University School of Medicine designates this live activity for a maximum of 3 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Attendees can also request a certificate of attendance at the conclusion of the conference.