January 29, 2009 — When parents have broad access to a widely promoted positive parenting program, key measures of child maltreatment drop significantly, a population-based study shows.
The study is published online January 22 in Prevention Science (article).
The US Triple P (Positive Parenting Program) System Population Trial found lower rates of confirmed child abuse, foster-care placements, and hospital visits for child injuries in 9 counties in South Carolina where a multilevel parenting support system — the Triple P — was implemented compared with 9 counties providing usual services.
The evidence-based parenting program, developed by study coinvestigator Matthew R. Sanders, PhD, from the University of Queensland, in Brisbane, Australia, is designed to provide parents with skills to deal with newborns to 12-year-old children. It offers different levels of parental support to match a family's needs. The current study focused on child-maltreatment outcomes in children younger than 8 years.
Researchers estimate that implementation of the Triple P system would translate into 688 fewer cases of child maltreatment, 240 fewer out-of-home placements, and 60 fewer children with injuries requiring hospitalization or emergency-department treatment for every 100,000 children younger than 8 years on an annual basis.
"This is the first large-scale study to show that by providing all families, not just families in crisis, with access to parenting information and support, we can reduce the rates of child maltreatment in whole communities," lead author Ronald J. Prinz, PhD, from the University of South Carolina, in Columbia, said in a statement.
Triple P - http://www.triplep.net/
Triple P America - http://www.triplep-america.com/
South Carolina Triple P - http://tpinfo.sc.edu/
SAMHSA National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices http://www.nrepp.samhsa.gov/programfulldetails.asp?PROGRAM_ID=218
CWLA (positive parenting tips/resources) - http://www.cwla.org/positiveparenting/