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Randomised controlled trial
Nurse home visits for infants and toddlers of low-income families improve behavioural, language and attention outcomes at age 6–9 years; paraprofessional visits improve visual attention and task switching
  1. Kenneth A Dodge
  1. Center for Child and Family Policy, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, USA
  1. Correspondence to : Professor Kenneth A Dodge, Center for Child and Family Policy, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708, USA; dodge{at}

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Implications for practice and research

  • Infant home visiting can be efficacious in improving child developmental outcomes throughout early childhood.

  • Home visiting by trained nurses produce positive outcomes, whereas outcomes for paraprofessionals are mixed.

  • This study suggests that future research should be directed towards understanding how nurses have a more positive impact on mothers and their children than paraprofessionals.


Through the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (funded under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act), federal funds now support early-life home-visiting programmes in the USA, but only if they are evidence-based. Therefore, the rigorous evaluation of different models of home-visiting programmes has increased.1 The Nurse Family Partnership is the most studied home-visiting model in the USA, …

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  • Competing interests None.