Issue Archive
Volume 32, Number 5
September/October 2006

Continuing Education
Nurses' Utilization of Parent Questionnaires for Developmental Screening
Jennie Wagner, Beth Jenkins, and Jean C. Smith

In the United States it is estimated that 16% of children are affected by developmental disabilities (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2001). Unfortunately, national statistics indicate that fewer than 30% of children with developmental or behavior problems are identified prior to entering kindergarten (Glascoe & Macias, 2003). Early Intervention studies and research on brain development have demonstrated the short and long-range benefits of early identification of developmental delays and intervention in the preschool years (Glascoe & Macias, 2003). During the past decade several studies have validated the use of parent questionnaires that screen for developmental delays. The nurse in a clinic, private office, or community health center should become familiar with the vast array of developmental screening tools. With this knowledge, the nurse can become the champion of change in selecting and incorporating the best tools for the systematic screening of children for developmental delay, as part of the well-child check-up.