Providers' Perceptions of a Safety- Related Education Leaflet for Pediatric Autism Spectrum Disorder
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Background and Significance: Deaths by injury in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are significantly higher than other children. Healthcare providers should be educating caregivers on specific safety related to this population. However, resources for this type of education are scarce. Purpose and Objective: To create a unique, safety education leaflet and investigate its level of usefulness compared to providers’ current educational materials. Theoretical framework: Pender’s health promotion model focuses on taking measures to promote good health. As Pender intended, the theory guides the provider through teaching safety promoting behaviors, which increases health and safety outcomes for children. Methods: A safety leaflet was developed and distributed to physicians and nurse practitioners (n=19) at a primary pediatric practice that cares for children (ages 2-15) with ASD. A survey using a 4-point Likert-type scale ranging from 1 (not at all useful) to 4 (very useful) was developed and administered to determine the providers’ level of perceived usefulness of the leaflet. Results: The majority of providers rated the leaflet as “very useful” or “useful” (n = 10, 83.3%), as compared to and their current education materials, which were “slightly useful” or “not useful at all” (n = 10, 77%). Providers who have been practicing over 20 years (p = 0.036, were especially positive. Conclusion: The leaflet was perceived as useful, and could help providers educate parents/caregivers of pediatric patients with ASD by facilitating understanding of the unique safety risks within this population, as well as help to understand measures to mitigate injury.