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J Autism Dev Disord ; 2022 Jan 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1640917


Given long waitlists for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) evaluation coupled with the COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial to triage patients to services they are likely to receive diagnostic clarity (i.e., virtual, in-person evaluation). Participants attended a virtual ASD assessment. A subset also attended in-person evaluation. Results suggest younger children with educational services for ASD may benefit from virtual assessment while older patients with a history of psychiatric conditions may benefit from in-person evaluation. An ASD symptom severity tool related to virtual and in-person diagnostic clarity. Family history of ASD related to in-person diagnosis while other variables (e.g., age, educational services) did not. The study suggests patient characteristics may be used to determine for whom virtual ASD assessment may be appropriate.

Child Abuse Negl ; 130(Pt 1): 105450, 2022 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1588111


BACKGROUND: Heightened familial stress and distress during the COVID-19 pandemic may lead to increased negative parenting practices, particularly for parents with substantial adverse childhood experiences (ACES). OBJECTIVE: To determine whether families' COVID-19-related distress is associated with young children's emotional/behavioral functioning via negative parenting, and whether these relationships vary based on parents' ACEs. PARTICIPANTS AND SETTING: Participants were 267 parents of children ages 1.5-5 years recruited from five primary care sites across the United States. METHODS: Participants completed internet questionnaires including measures of demographics, parent ACES, negative parenting, parent mental health, and COVID-19 distress. We used regression analyses to test a moderated mediation model in which the relationship between COVID-19 distress and child emotional/behavioral problems is mediated by negative parenting, and both the direct and indirect effects of COVID-19 distress on child emotional/behavioral problems is moderated by parents' ACEs. RESULTS: Negative parenting significantly mediated the relationship between COVID-19 distress and child emotional/behavioral problems (indirect effect ß = 0.07). Parents' ACEs moderated the associations between COVID-19 distress and both negative parenting and child emotional/behavioral problems, such that each relationship was stronger in the context of higher parental ACEs. The model accounted for 42% of the variance in child emotional/behavioral problems. CONCLUSIONS: Findings have implications for managing risk and promoting well-being in young children during periods of significant stress and routine disruption. This study advances understanding of factors influencing negative outcomes in children during the pandemic's acute phase and may have implications for the development of targeted interventions to improve families' adjustment in the future.

Adverse Childhood Experiences , COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Humans , Infant , Pandemics , Parenting , Parents