The Predictive Value of Parental and Professional Concerns about Early Child Development, pp. 237-250
Authors: (Anne Margrethe Rostad, Dag Erik Eilertsen, Harald Martinsen, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, and Levanger Hospital, Levanger, Norway)
Abstract: The article presents a study of the prevalence and predictive validity of parental and professional concerns about children‟s early development. Worries were registered at the routine primary health care assessments during the children’s first seven months of life. At four years of age, information was gathered about the children’s behavior problems and diagnoses. Both the parents and the professionals were found to be worried about more than 40% of the children, but mostly about different children. They did not share concerns about the same children more often than should be expected by chance. The early concerns were significantly correlated with disabilites and some clinical problems at 4 years of age, but the correlations were too low to be of clinical interest. The correlations between early concerns and behavior were very low and did mostly not reach statistical significance. The implications of the findings with regard to the problem of identifying children with need of early intervention are discussed.