Mar 29 2018: 1:00pm–4:15pm

Working with Children and Adolescents with Developmental Disabilities and Social/Emotional Disturbances: Assessment, Treatment, and Community Resources

Medical Education, Mental Health and Behavioral Health

Bradley Conference is designed to provide education for psychologists, social workers, physicians, nurses, certified counselors, speech/language and occupational therapists, teachers, milieu associates, and other professionals who work with children, adolescents or adults. Topics address different behavioral health populations and treatment modalities and are intended to provide practical, state-of-the-art information.


Giulia Righi, PhD, is a psychologist at the Emma Pendleton Bradley Hospital, who specializes in working with children and adolescents with developmental disabilities and co-occurring psychiatric disorders. Dr. Righi is also an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Division of Biology and Medicine of the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Dr. Righi received her doctorate in cognitive sciences from Brown University and completed a clinical respecialization fellowship at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.  Dr. Righi has a combined background in cognitive neuroscience and clinical psychology with an emphasis on developmental disabilities, and is actively involved in treatment and research with this population. Dr. Righi’s research activities are focused on the study of the phenotypic and psychophysiological characteristics of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder, with a specific focus on psychiatric co-morbidities. Dr. Righi is actively involved in a national research project, the Autism and Developmental Disorder Inpatient Research Collaborative (ADDIRC), and a state-wide research project, the Rhode Island Consortium for Autism Research and Treatment (RI-CART).

Kehinde Vaz, LCSW, is a clinical social worker in the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities Partial Hospitalization Program. Kehinde has over 10 years experience in social services and working with individuals with disabilities and their families. Kehinde received her masters degree in social work from the University of Georgia. Kehinde has been employed with Bradley since 2014. Kehinde previously worked United Cerebral Palsy and Jewish Family and Career Services located in Georgia where she managed a residential home and provided in-home therapeutic services for adults with various developmental disabilities.

Olga Resendes, BCaBA, is a senior psychology assistant/behavior specialist for the CADD inpatient and CADD partial program.  Olga has 30 years of experience in working with dually diagnosed children and  adolescents who engage in various forms problematic behaviors  (i.e., aggression, self-injury, etc.). Olga received her BA in psychology from Rhode Island College. She also carries a BCaBA certificate from Penn State University and is currently pursuing her master’s degree in applied behavioral analysis from Ball State University.  Olga has worked at Bradley Hospital on the CADD inpatient program for the past 30 years, and currently splits her time with the CADD partial program since its inception.


This presentation will provide an overview of the assessment and treatment of social/emotional disturbances and associated challenging behaviors that can co-occur with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in children and adolescents. More specifically, this presentation will review available tools to assess different types of social/emotional co-morbidities and treatments that have shown to be effective in reducing the severity of these co-morbidities across different ages and levels of functioning. Community supports for individuals and their families will also be discussed, as they can be an essential component to sustain positive long-term outcomes. Case examples will be discussed to illustrate the implementation of assessment and treatment.

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this session, participants should be able to:

1.  Recognize  incidence of social/emotional disturbances and associated challenging behaviors in ASD, and their presentation
    across development and level of functioning.
2. Recognize instruments available to assess the type and severity of social/emotional disturbances in ASD.
3. Describe treatments that have been shown to be effective in reducing the severity of social/emotional disturbances in children
    and adolescents with ASD.


  • Target audience: Psychologists, physicians, social workers and other interested health care professionals
  • 3 CE Hours/Credits (see below) 
  • Beverages and light snacks will be offered 

Registration Information

  • Program fee: $59  Lifespan employee discounted rate: $49
  • Online registration closes on Wednesday, March 28
  • Phone registration: Please call the department of behavioral education at 401-432-1087. 
  • For refund/cancellation information please email or call Liz DeFreitas at 401-432-1087.
  • To request reasonable accommodation for a disability, please contact the Rhode Island Hospital CME office at 401-444-4260.  

Register Online

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation criteria and policies of the Rhode Island Medical Society (RIMS) through the joint providership of Rhode Island Hospital and Bradley Hospital.  Rhode Island Hospital is accredited by the Rhode Island Medical Society to provide continuing medical education for physicians.      

Rhode Island Hospital designates this live activity for a maximum of 3.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 

Rhode Island Hospital is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Rhode Island Hospital maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

CEUs for this event have been submitted, pending approval by the National Board for Social Work (NASW), designating this live activity for a maximum of 3.0 continuing education credits for certified counselors, marriage and family therapists.