Article

Moderators and predictors of clinical outcome in a randomized trial for behavior problems in pediatric primary care.

Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.
Journal of Pediatric Psychology (Impact Factor: 2.91). 02/2011; 36(7):753-65. DOI: 10.1093/jpepsy/jsr006
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To evaluate putative moderator, predictor, and treatment parameter variables in relation to three outcomes in a clinical trial that compared a modular protocol for on-site, nurse-administered intervention (PONI) and enhanced usual care (EUC) for pediatric behavioral problems in primary care.
Patients were 163 clinically referred children for behavior problems in six primary care offices. PONI consisted of seven treatment modules adapted from prior treatment trials with this population, whereas EUC involved a facilitated referral to a community provider. Outcome measures were based on standardized scales reflecting one parent-rated aggregate (child dysfunction) and one child-rated aggregate (child health), and diagnostic interviews with both informants (remission in oppositional defiant disorder).
Moderator analyses revealed that PONI was more effective than EUC in reducing child dysfunction by 12-month follow-up among Caucasian children, whereas EUC was more effective than PONI among non-Caucasian children. In the full sample, child health improvement was predicted by the severity of the child's depression and anxiety, and level of family conflict. Duration of child exposure to cognitive-behavioral treatment in PONI was related to greater improvement in overall child health, but other treatment parameters were unrelated to outcome.
These few significant relationships notwithstanding the findings indicate that the two treatments had robust effects on several outcomes and across selected child, parent, family, and treatment variables. The findings extend efforts to incorporate mental health services in pediatric practice.

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    ABSTRACT: Because the integration of mental or behavioral health services in pediatric primary care is a national priority, a description and evaluation of the interventions applied in the healthcare setting is warranted. This article examines several intervention research studies based on alternative models for delivering behavioral health care in conjunction with comprehensive pediatric care. This review describes the diverse methods applied to different clinical problems, such as brief mental health skills, clinical guidelines, and evidence-based practices, and the empirical outcomes of this research literature. Next, several key treatment considerations are discussed to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of these interventions. Some practical suggestions for overcoming key service barriers are provided to enhance the capacity of the practice to deliver behavioral health care. There is moderate empirical support for the feasibility, acceptability, and clinical utility of these interventions for treating internalizing and externalizing behavior problems. Practical strategies to extend this work and address methodological limitations are provided that draw upon recent frameworks designed to simplify the treatment enterprise (e.g., common elements). Pediatric primary care has become an important venue for providing mental health services to children and adolescents due, in part, to its many desirable features (e.g., no stigma, local setting, familiar providers). Further adaptation of existing delivery models may promote the delivery of effective integrated interventions with primary care providers as partners designed to address mental health problems in pediatric healthcare.
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