Mapping experiences of PDA in Ireland


Mapping experiences of pathological demand avoidance in Ireland.

This national study sought to gather the viewpoints of PDA individuals, families, and practitioners, with the intention of determining levels of knowledge, recognition and understanding of PDA; exploring current pathways to assessment and diagnosis; capturing experiences of access to education and healthcare services; identifying effective intervention and support strategies; and illuminating education and health outcomes for individuals and families.

This mixed-method study collates survey responses from 264 parents, 9 life partners, 6 PDA individuals and 54 practitioners, and in-depth individual and focus group interviews from these cohorts.

Findings suggest that a flexible, informed and individualised approach to assessment and service provision for PDA individuals presenting with a PDA profile is essential. Practitioners universally referred to the necessity for a streamlined, integrated and multi-disciplinary approach. The reported disconnect between education and health systems indicates a need for access to services on an equitable basis.


Authors: Alison Doyle and Neil Kenny

Published: Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs, November 2022



Please also see: