Purpose: This study aims to examine predictors of parent use of a child health home-based record and associations with child health/developmental outcomes.
Design and methods: Data for this study was obtained from a nationally representative study of Australian children from 2004 to 2016. The current study focuses on the kindergarten cohort of the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children, which enrolled children at the ages of 4–5 years. Logistic regression was used to analyse the data using Odds Ratio (OR) at 95% Confidence Interval (CI) and p-value of 0.05.
Results: A total of 4983 parent-child pairs participated at the beginning of the study in 2004, which reduced to 3089 (62%) by 2016. The most significant predictor of home-based record use was co-parenting, with single parents less likely to use the record (Adjusted OR = 0.633–95%CI:0.518–0.772). Similarly, child up-to-date immunisation was 31% higher among parents who used the record (OR = 1.313–95%CI:1.049–1.644). Children without a home-based record had increased odds of having various health/developmental concerns (p < 0.05).
Conclusion: The findings suggest that using a home-based record may have a long-term impact on child health and development. It is also possible that home-based records are more likely to be used by parents of relatively healthy children. Further work is needed to consider if home-based records need to be modified for parents of children with health/development problems.
Practice implications: Nurses and other primary care providers at forefront of family health should ensure proper use of child health home-based records as well as promote its use by parents and caregivers of children.
- home-based record
- child health
- child development