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Better together: Developmental screening and monitoring best identify children who need early intervention

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  • Alternative Title:
    Disabil Health J
  • Description:
    Background Widely recommended developmental surveillance methods include developmental monitoring (DM) and development screening (DS). Much research has been done on DS, but very little research has compared the effectiveness of DM and DS together. Objectives To investigate the relationship between DM and DS in Part C early intervention (EI) service receipt. Methods Authors used data from the 2007/2008 and 2011/2012 National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH). Authors report the prevalence of children aged 10 months to 3 years who received (a) DM only, (b) DS only, (c) both DM and DS, and (c) no DM or DS across survey years. Authors compare the odds of EI receipt across these groups. Results During both periods, estimated EI receipt prevalence was higher for children receiving both DM and DS (8.38% in 2007/2008; 6.47% in 2011/2012) compared to children receiving no DM or DS (1.31% in 2007/2008; 1.92% in 2011/2012), DM alone (2.74% in 2007/2008; 2.70% in 2011/2012), or DS alone (3.59% in 2007/2008; 3.09% in 2011/2012) (for both time frames, p < .05). From 2007/2008 to 2011/2012, the proportion of children receiving DS only and both DM and DS increased, while children receiving DM only and no DM or DS decreased. Conclusions Children receiving DM and DS together were more likely to receive EI compared to children receiving DM alone, DS alone, or neither DM nor DS. These findings support the AAP recommendations indicating that DM and DS are complementary strategies for improving early identification and linkage to EI for young children.
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