Early years are critical for the development of neural connections that influence lifelong trajectories of health, learning and behaviour. No universal child development indicators to assess young children at household level are available. This paper describes the development and psychometric properties of “Care for Development, Appraisal Tool for Assessing and Monitoring Child Development: First Three years” (CDA tool) that equips frontline health workers with essential skills to adequately assess child development and educate caregivers about early child development. The tool was developed by multidisciplinary research team after extensive literature review and field trails in three steps. First step was conceptualization of theoretical framework followed by consolidation and development of guide. Second step was field testing and norms development on 1000 children. Finally tool was evaluated by external reviewers. CDA tool has sound psychometric ability in terms of its contents and concurrent validity, is culturally appropriate and easy to administer. It can be used by frontline health workers to identify and track high risk children across the globe thereby helping children from low-resource settings to realize their full potentials.
Sanober Nadeem, Bilal Iqbal Avan and Ghazala Rafique