Early intervention to reduce the risk of child maltreatment: results of a randomised trial of a nurse-led group intervention

22 February 2017, 4:00 pm–5:00 pm


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Darwin Building B40 LT -Gower Street, WC1E 6BT

Speaker: Professor Jacqueline Barnes - Institute for the Study of Children, Families and Social Issues, Birkbeck

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Child maltreatment is a significant public health problem but there are few effective methods to reduce risk in expectant mothers and new parents. Previous research will be reviewed briefly to provide context.  Then the results from the First Steps study will be given. Group Family Nurse Partnership (gFNP), based on the Family Nurse Partnership program, has been implemented successfully in pilot studies.  The programme is delivered by two experienced FNP Family Nurses to groups of 8 -12 women, from early pregnancy until infants are 12 months old. The First Steps Study aimed to determine its potential to reduce risk factors for maltreatment. A multi-site randomized controlled parallel-arm trial and prospective economic evaluation was conducted. Participants were expectant mothers aged <20 with at least one live birth, or 20-24 with no live births and with low educational qualifications. Maternal interviews were conducted at baseline and when infants were two, six and 12 months, with video of mother-infant interactions at 12 months, by researchers blind to allocation. Cost information came from weekly gFNP Family Nurse logs and other service delivery data.