A Cost Per Behavior Change Analysis for Physical Therapy-Behavior Modification Projects
The problem. To develop a method which could be used to determine the effects and related costs of producing certain physical-motor skills in multiple handicapped retardates. This study should provide a data base for later cost-effectiveness studies. Procedure. Child development workers on the program unit were trained to conduct physical therapy-behavior modification projects. The effectiveness of these projects was evaluated by comparing performance prior to intervention with performance following intervention. Costs for achieving this change in performance were presented in five separate categories. The first was the number of hours of treatment necessary to produce the behavior change multiplied by the hourly wage of the CDW who conducted the treatment, the second was the cost for medical intervention, the third was the cost for reinforcers and the fourth represented the costs of consultation by the physical therapist and the behavior modifier. The final category was simply the total cost of treatment. Fingings. It was possible to isolate the cost variables necessary for producing behavior change. Cost per behavior change was determined for twenty-six specific behaviors. Conclusion. Direct treatment by non-professional CDWs was shown to be an effective means of producing behavior change and treatment by these non-professionals was found to be economically feasible. Recommendations. The data from this study and similar studies should be used to develop a model which can be used to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of such programs.