Enhancing Child Safety and Well-Being Through Pediatric Group Well-Child Care and Home Visitation: The Well Baby Plus Program




Francis E. Rushton, Westley W. Byrne, Paul M. Darden, and Jill McLeigh

Brief Type

Journal Publication


  • Other Models
  • Parents as Teachers (PAT)


The focus of this article is on an innovative strengths-based child protection effort initiated in Beaufort, South Carolina, that involved working with local systems and structures. Specifically, the program was a school-health partnership that sought to modify services provided to low resource families to improve child outcomes. The primary components of the prevention program were home visiting and group well visits (GWVs). This article describes the program and the effects of the combined approach on healthcare utilization, child health status, and parental competence for families with low socioeconomic status. A matched pairs analysis of 102 families (51 intervention and 51 comparison families) was conducted. WB+ families were significantly more likely to attend all scheduled well-child visits (65% vs. 37%) and to be fully immunized (98% vs. 82%) than matched families who received traditional pediatric care. Intervention families had significantly greater recall of anticipatory guidance on safety (65% vs. 41%) and had greater satisfaction with care. Intervention infants were also noted to be statistically less likely to be overweight at 15 months of age (8% vs. 24%). The study demonstrated benefits on child health and parenting competence among families with low socioeconomic status. Implications for practice are discussed. (author abstract)

Data Collection Methods

  • Program administrative record reviews
  • Standardized assessment tools
  • Surveys or questionnaires



For More Information

Rushton, F. E., Byrne, W. W., Darden, P. M., & McLeigh, J. (2015). Enhancing child safety and well-being through pediatric group well-child care and home visitation: The Well Baby Plus program. Child Abuse & Neglect41, 182-189. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chiabu.2015.01.008


  • Participant, Family, and Program Outcomes
  • Program Enhancements, Innovations, and Promising Approaches