Evidence for the feasibility of balance


BALANCE was developed and tested for feasibility and acceptability at the IWK Health Centre with staff in the Perioperative Care area.

58 staff members started BALANCE and 54 completed all modules. We asked staff to give us feedback on the usefulness of BALANCE when they finished the modules. 

Here are their responses:

100% of people said... BALANCE was helpful for them.
100% of people said... BALANCE would be helpful for others.
98% of people said... BALANCE was easy to navigate.
96% of people said... The presentation of the content contributed to a positive user experience.
100% of people said... BALANCE contained valuable information.
100% of people said... They felt comfortable working through BALANCE.
100% of people said... They understood the information presented
98% of people said... They trusted the information in BALANCE
100% of people said... They were satisfied with BALANCE.
76% of people said... The time required to complete BALANCE was reasonable.
98% of people said... BALANCE helped them to think about how to enhance their practice.

evidence for the effects of balance 


We asked healthcare providers to fill out surveys before they began BALANCE, after they finished BALANCE, and three months later.

On a survey of how comfortable healthcare providers were caring for kids with ASD, we saw improvements from before to after BALANCE. These improvements were maintained three months later.

On a survey of the healthcare providers' delivery of PACE-consistent care, staff also reported using more ASD-specific strategies three months after BALANCE.


To get the family perspective on what changed, we also interviewed 25 families who received surgical care at the IWK before and after BALANCE.

Here are some representative quotes of what families had to say after BALANCE...

Everything went well. The approach was very oriented to his needs. This was the first time we were asked questions about his needs. They really cared about him having autism.


It’s just obvious that the staff has either received training or that they are really serious about adapting their care to make kids more comfortable.


They really, really tried. I was almost surprised how they tried to augment the care because he was on the spectrum. It was unexpected, but very nice at the same time.

They really did take my input and put it into practice. When it came back and it was reassured to me that they used it and it worked wonderfully, they seemed appreciative. They were grateful for it.


We were in a quiet room to start out with, where we got to stay and wait… Which was great. It was just less stimulation. It was perfect.


The nurse who came in first got all the info from us, was really thorough, very kind. She was great. She seemed very comfortable working with an autistic child. When she came in she addressed him, she didn’t put herself in his face or make eye contact or anything, even though those things are okay with him. But she checked with me first to see if those things were going to be okay. So that was great!


Canadian Association of Pediatric Health Centres, 2016


International Meeting for Autism Research, 2016