DBPNet Publishes Research on Diagnostic Procedures and Patient Report Measure

April 12, 2017

The Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics Research Network (DBPNet) is a 14 site Network whose mission is "to conduct collaborative, interdisciplinary research in developmental and behavioral pediatrics that advances clinical practice, supports research training, and optimizes the health and functional status of children with developmental and behavioral concerns and disorders, including children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and other developmental disabilities". The Network had a successful competitive renewal in the past year and is now funded from 9/16 through 8/21.

In 2016 the Network has published (Pediatrics 2016;137(s2):s79-89) a study on variations in the diagnostic procedures for ASD at different DBPNet sites. This study found that although most assessments (56%) were completed in 1 visit, 27.5% were completed in 2 visits, and 8.6% in 3 visits. The study also found significant variability in the diagnostic tools used. For example , use of the Childhood Autism Rating Scale, Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, or Screening Tool for Autism in Toddlers and Young Children varied from 28.6% to 100% of encounters across sites.

DBPNet has also completed studies on the validity of outcome measures developed by the NIH Patient Reported Outcome Measurement Information System (PROMIS®) initiative in children and adolescents with ASD. The first paper from this work on the Peer Relationships Measure was published in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics (2016;37:724-729) and suggests that the PROMIS measure is likely to be a valid measure in children with ASD.

The Network's NIMH-funded multi-site randomized clinical trial of a family navigator intervention to improve access to care and reduce health disparities among vulnerable low-income families with children with an autism spectrum disorder is currently enrolling subjects at 3 DBPNet sites.