Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up (ABC) -Infant Meets HHS Criteria

Model effectiveness research report last updated: 2020

In brief

Evidence of model effectiveness

This model meets the criteria established by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for an “evidence-based early childhood home visiting service delivery model” for the general population, but does not meet the criteria for tribal populations.

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Model description

Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up–Infant (ABC-Infant) is a training program for caregivers of infants between the ages of 6 and 24 months, including high-risk birth parents and caregivers of young children in foster care, kinship care (such as a grandparent raising a grandchild), and adoptive care. Parent coaches conduct 10 weekly home visits lasting about 60 minutes each. The model is designed to help caregivers provide (1) nurturing, even when children do not appear to need it, (2) mutually responsive interactions in which caregivers follow children’s lead, and (3) care that does not frighten children. Parent coaches provide immediate feedback (referred to as “in the moment” comments) on the caregivers’ interaction with the child to help the caregivers attend to the target behaviors. During visits, the parent coach and caregiver watch videos of the caregiver interacting with the child. The parent coach highlights the caregiver’s strengths, celebrates changes in behavior, and identifies areas for improvement. The model also incorporates homework to give caregivers the opportunity to practice the skills they are learning and record their observations about their own behavior and the child’s behavior.

This report also includes a review of ABC-Toddler, designed for children between the ages of 24 and 48 months. (The studies HomVEE reviewed for ABC-Infant include research published before 2015 when the model was called the “ABC Intervention” and research published after the developer renamed the model “ABC-Infant” after introducing ABC-Toddler.)

For more information on ABC-Infant, please read the Model Overview.

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Extent of evidence

Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up (ABC) -Infant
Results of search and review
Number of manuscripts
At least one finding was eligible for review…
28
  …and at least one finding rated high
4
  …and at least one finding rated moderate (but none rated high)
7
  …and all findings that were eligible for review rated low
15
  …but manuscript is additional source2
2
Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up (ABC) -Toddler
Results of search and review
Number of manuscripts
At least one finding was eligible for review…
2
  …and at least one finding rated high
0
  …and at least one finding rated moderate (but none rated high)
1
  …and all findings that were eligible for review rated low
1
  …but manuscript is additional source2
0

For more information, see the research database. For more information on the criteria used to rate research, please see details of HomVEE’s methods and standards.

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Summary of findings

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Criteria established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Information based on comprehensive review of all high- and moderate-rated manuscripts
Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up (ABC) -Infant
CriterionCriterion descriptionCriterion met?
1High- or moderate-quality impact study?Yes
2Across high- or moderate-quality studies, favorable impacts in at least two outcome domains within one sample OR the same domain for at least two non-overlapping samples?Yes
3Favorable impacts on full sample?Yes
4Any favorable impacts on outcome measures sustained at least 12 months after model enrollment?
Reported for all research but only required for RCTs.
Yes
5One or more favorable, statistically significant impact reported in a peer-reviewed journal?
Reported for all research but only required for RCTs.
Yes
Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-Up (ABC) -Toddler
CriterionCriterion descriptionCriterion met?
1High- or moderate-quality impact study?Yes
2Across high- or moderate-quality studies, favorable impacts in at least two outcome domains within one sample OR the same domain for at least two non-overlapping samples?No
3Favorable impacts on full sample?Yes
4Any favorable impacts on outcome measures sustained at least 12 months after model enrollment?
Reported for all research but only required for RCTs.
Yes
5One or more favorable, statistically significant impact reported in a peer-reviewed journal?
Reported for all research but only required for RCTs.
Yes
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