Happy Start, Healthy Start: helping parents with children's behaviour

North West London
Start Date: 1 Apr 2015 End Date: 1 Mar 2016

Background and study aims 

To conduct a randomised controlled trial (RCT) to test the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a brief video-feedback parenting intervention (ViPP-SD) in reducing enduring behavioural problems in young children aged 12-36 months.

Outcome & Impact statement

The study is ongoing. We have been actively recruiting since April 2015, with the first recruit randomised in July 2015. Recruitment to date is 75 participants. The trial is expected to continue into 2019.04/01/2015

What does the study involve? 

Participating families are randomly allocated into two groups. Those assigned to the intervention receive ViPP-SD and those assigned to the control group receive treatment as usual. In this study ViPP-SD is offered to two parents/caregivers, or one parent, depending on the family’s preferences. The programme is carried out in the participant’s home by trained professionals and involves six visits, lasting 90 minutes, at roughly fortnightly intervals. Each visit involves a video recording session, after which the recording from the previous visit is viewed and discussed with an emphasis on identifying and reinforcing positive interactions. Parents are supported in observing their child’s behaviour, empathising with their child, praising their child when they behave in a positive manner, and adopting optimal discipline strategies. Parents in both the intervention and control group are asked to meet with a member of the research team to complete assessments on three occasions: before they are assigned to a group, and four and twenty-four months after assignment. These assessments include questions about the child’s behaviour, parental wellbeing, and observations of parent-child interactions.

Dr Paul Ramchandani