Sensory Integration and Mental Health: Learn The Signs. Act Early. What do you need to know?



A conversation with Dr. Kate Barlow, OTD, OTR/L

moderated by Erin Flynn, MS, OTR/L

This discussion is part of the 2022 LiveTalk Series Sensory Integration and Mental Health: Exploring and Expanding Our Role. The series is included in all SPIRAL Memberships.

Description: The CDC’s “Learn the Signs. Act Early” (LTSAE) program aims to improve early identification of children with autism and other developmental disabilities so children and families can get the services and support they need. Dr. Kate Barlow, the LTSAE Ambassador for the state of Massachusetts, will share the highlights of this program and how occupational therapy professionals and others working in Early Intervention can apply this program in their clinical practice. Dr. Barlow will also explore the process of becoming an endorsed provider by the Massachusetts Association for Infant Mental Health (MassAIMH). MassAIMH is an organization for providers and professionals from diverse and varied disciplines, serving young children and families and are dedicated to promoting healthy social and emotional development in the earliest stages and relationships of life.

Learning Objectives: By the end of the 2022 LiveTalk Series participants will be able to:

  1. Identify how to increase mental health knowledge for occupational therapy professionals across settings
  2. Recognize relationship and developmental based mental health models that compliment Sensory Integration intervention
  3. Select intervention modalities and models that support mental health while utilizing Sensory Integration principles

By the end of this discussion, part 4 of 10 in the 2022 LiveTalk Series, participants will be able to:

  1. Identify ways to access the LTSAE materials and apply them in diverse settings.
  2. Recognize developmental milestones using the developmental surveillance checklists on the LTSAE website
  3. Identify the steps to receive an endorsement from MassAIMH

About the Speaker: Kate Barlow, OTD is an Associate Professor at American International College. She is also the current ambassador for the CDC’s LTSAE program for the state of Massachusetts. Dr. Barlow received her BS in Occupational Therapy from Boston University, and her MS and OTD from Virginia Commonwealth University. She has over 20 years of clinical experience that includes public school practice, early intervention, a pediatric hospital-based outpatient clinic and management. Dr. Barlow’s area of clinical expertise is pediatric feeding and swallowing, which she has presented on both nationally and internationally. Dr. Barlow’s passion is in global outreach. She founded the International Interprofessional Mentorship Program that currently provides mentorship to over 150 therapists in over 20 countries. She also started a webpage for occupational therapists to share resources and knowledge.

Disclosure: Dr. Barlow has no financial relationships to disclose.

Course Level: Introductory

Audience: OT/ OTA, PT /PTA, SLP, psychologists, educators, parents

AOTA Areas: Occupational Therapy Service Delivery: Evaluation, Intervention and Outcomes. Professional Issues: Administration and Management. Foundational Knowledge: Social Determinants of Health

Contact Hours: This conversation is worth 1 contact hour or 0.1 AOTA CEUs. The full series has been approved for 10 contact hours or 1.0 AOTA CEUs.

Completion Requirements: To receive contact hours for this course you must listen to the discussion in its entirety and complete the accompanying assessment.

ADA/Section 504: If you require special accommodations, please contact the Spiral Foundation at or (617) 969-4410 ext. 267

Continuing Education: Occupational Therapy Practitioners/ Occupational Therapy Assistants: Foundation is an Approved Provider of Continuing Education for occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants by the American Occupational Therapy Association. The assignment of AOTA CEUs does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures by AOTA.


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