Evidence for use of PDA terminology


Evidence for Professional Consideration of Demand Avoidance in Autism Assessments

The continued debate around the use of PDA as a diagnostic term has led to polarisation amongst professionals, and the potential for friction between families and clinicians.

This document presents some of the evidence, including Government statements, which demonstrate that it is not incorrect to use terminology which refers to the PDA profile.

With research at an early stage, it is helpful to have an open mind-set and avoid adversarial approaches to ensure that outcomes are maximised, and so accept differences in approaches to terminology. It must also be understood that when profiles, or conditions, are defined by a number of behavioural features there will be obviously be connections and overlaps between them. Similar behaviours can be seen within other conditions and for other reasons. For a clinician teasing out the underlying causes can be very difficult, requiring expertise and experience.


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