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Systematic review of parenting interventions in European countries aiming to reduce social inequalities in children’s health and development

Joana Morrison, Hynek Pikhart, Milagros Ruiz, Peter Goldblatt
Datos fuente
BMC Public Health 2014, 14:1040
  • Revisiones Bibliográficas
  • Inglés
Publicado en ODS
Background: Early child development influences many aspects of wellbeing, health, competence in literacy andnumeracy, criminality, and social and economic participation throughout the life course. Children fromdisadvantaged groups have less possibilities of achieving full development. By providing a positive start for allchildren across the social gradient, improved developmental outcomes will be seen during later childhood andthroughout their lives. The objective of this systematic review was to identify interventions during early childhoodin countries from the World Health Organisation European Region in 1999–2013 which reduced inequalities inchildren’s health and development.Methods: A systematic review was carried out adhering to the PRISMA guidelines. The review examined universal,targeted and proportionate universalism interventions, programs and services using an electronic search strategy inPubMed and the International Bibliography of the Social Sciences [IBSS] databases. A further search was performedin the grey literature. Interventions were included only if they were aimed at children or their parents and hadbeen evaluated.Results: We identified 23 interventions in total: 6 in the PubMed data base, 5 in IBSS and 12 in grey literature. Allbut 1 intervention-delivered in Sweden-were carried out in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. Theseaimed to improve parenting abilities, however, some had additional components such as: day-care provision,improving housing conditions and speech or psychological therapies. Programmes offering intensive support,information and home visits using a psycho-educational approach and aimed at developing parent’s and children’sskills showed more favourable outcomes. These were parenting behaviours, overall children’s health and higherlevel of fine motor skills and cognitive functioning. Child injuries and abuse were also reduced. Two interventionswere universally proportionate and all others were aimed at a specific target population.Conclusions: Interventions with better outcomes and a higher level of evidence combined workshops andeducational programmes for both parents and children beginning during early pregnancy and included home visitsby specialised staff. Further evaluation and publication of early years interventions should be carried out also withina wider range of countries than just the UK and Ireland
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