Systematic Review: Feasibility, Reliability, and Validity of Maternal/Caregiver Attachment and Bonding Screening Tools for Clinical Use

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Introduction: Infant–caregiver attachment is crucial for an infant's immediate and long-term social–emotional development and health. Despite advocacy by the National Institute of Children's Health Quality for infant social–emotional development screening, there is a lack of identified tools for use in primary care. Therefore, we conducted a systematic review to identify caretaker–infant attachment self-report screening tools that would be feasible, reliable, and valid for use in primary care. Method: A systematic search identified 340 abstracts/articles, which were screened using inclusion and exclusion criteria. Twelve articles and six self-report attachment tools were examined for reliability, validity, and feasibility characteristics. Results: Six caregiver–infant attachment self-report tools were identified. Establishment of feasibility, reliability, and validity are in the early stages. Discussion: Potential infant–caretaker attachment screening tools were identified for use in primary care practices. Suggestions for research and practice include informal screening, additional psychometric testing, and development of policies supporting implementation of screening.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)663-674
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Pediatric Health Care
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019



  • Attachment
  • bonding
  • primary care
  • screening
  • systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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