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Mental Health Services for Toddlers in Foster Care

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ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01261806
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : December 16, 2010
Last Update Posted : December 20, 2016
Sponsor:
Information provided by (Responsible Party):

Study Description
Brief Summary:
Toddlers (2- to 3-year-old children) in foster care often have difficulty regulating behavior and biology, and are at risk for a host of mental health problems. Critical issues for toddlers straddle the challenges of infancy and preschool years. In particular, toddlers in foster care face significant challenges in forming new attachment relationships and developing behavioral and biological regulatory capabilities. This project will assess the effectiveness of an intervention that targets these issues. Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up for Toddlers in Foster Care (ABC-T) was developed to help parents: provide nurturing care so that children develop secure, trusting relationships; and supporting children when they become overwhelmed that enhance children's ability to regulate behavior and biology. This intervention's effectiveness will be assessed in a randomized clinical trial.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Behavior Problems Behavioral: Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up Behavioral: Developmental Education for Families Phase 1

Detailed Description:
This study assesses the efficacy of a 10-session intervention for young children in the foster care system. Children are randomly assigned to the experimental condition (ABC-T) or to a treatment control (DEF). In the Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up for Toddlers (ABC-T) condition, children's foster parents receive an intervention that focuses on nurturance, following children's lead, and helping children settle when they become overwhelmed. In the Developmental Education for Families (DEF) intervention, children's foster parents receive an intervention that focuses on enhancing children's cognitive and motor skills. Both of the interventions are provided in families' homes for 10 sessions of about 60 minutes duration. Outcomes include attachment (assessed in the Preschool Strange Situation), cortisol production (assessed diurnally), child behavior problems (assessed through laboratory procedures that stress children), and through psychiatric interviews.

Study Design

Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 220 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Triple (Participant, Care Provider, Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: Mental Health Services for Toddlers in Foster Care
Study Start Date : April 2010
Primary Completion Date : December 2016
Study Completion Date : December 2016

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

MedlinePlus related topics: Mental Health
U.S. FDA Resources

Arms and Interventions

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up
Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up: 10 session intervention in foster families' homes designed to enhance parental nurturance, synchrony, and provide skills such that parents can help children calm down when overwhelmed.
Behavioral: Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up
Enhances nurturance, following the lead, and calming behaviors
Other Names:
  • ABC
  • ABC-T
  • Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up for Foster Toddlers
Active Comparator: Developmental Education for Families
10 session intervention in foster families' homes that targets cognitive and motor skills of children
Behavioral: Developmental Education for Families
Attention control: Enhances parents understanding of developmental milestones
Other Names:
  • DEF
  • Occupational Therapy/Physical Therapy


Outcome Measures

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Problem behaviors [ Time Frame: Annual ]
    Assessed through laboratory measures of child behavior problems. (Disruptive Behavior Diagnostic Observation Schedule)


Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Attachment [ Time Frame: Once at post-intervention ]
    Assessed through Preschool Strange Situation


Other Outcome Measures:
  1. Cortisol production [ Time Frame: Annual ]
    Diurnal cortisol assessed through saliva sampling at wake-up and bedtime


Eligibility Criteria

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   2 Years to 3 Years   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes
Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 2 -3 years of age, in foster care

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Not in foster care
Contacts and Locations

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT01261806


Locations
United States, Delaware
University of Delaware
Newark, Delaware, United States, 19716
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Delaware
Investigators
Principal Investigator: Mary Dozier, Ph.D. University of Delaware
More Information

Responsible Party: Mary Dozier, UNIDEL-Amy E dupont Professor, Psychology, University of Delaware
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01261806     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: NIH R01 MH052135
First Posted: December 16, 2010    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: December 20, 2016
Last Verified: December 2016
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: No

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Problem Behavior
Behavioral Symptoms