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Efficacy of a home-visiting intervention aimed at improving maternal sensitivity, child attachment, and behavioral outcomes for maltreated children: A randomized control trial

  • Ellen Moss (a1), Karine Dubois-Comtois (a2), Chantal Cyr (a1), George M. Tarabulsy (a3), Diane St-Laurent (a2) and Annie Bernier (a4)...


The efficacy of a short-term attachment-based intervention for changing risk outcomes for children of maltreating families was examined using a randomized control trial. Sixty-seven primary caregivers reported for maltreatment and their children (1–5 years) were randomly assigned to an intervention or control group. The intervention group received 8 weekly home visits directed at the caregiver–child dyad and focused on improving caregiver sensitivity. Intervention sessions included brief discussions of attachment–emotion regulation-related themes and video feedback of parent–child interaction. Comparison of pre- and posttest scores revealed significant improvements for the intervention group in parental sensitivity and child attachment security, and a reduction in child disorganization. Older children in the intervention group also showed lower levels of internalizing and externalizing problems following intervention. This is the first study to demonstrate the efficacy of short-term attachment-based intervention in enhancing parental sensitivity, improving child security, and reducing disorganization for children in the early childhood period.


Corresponding author

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Ellen Moss, Department of Psychology, Université du Québec à Montréal, C.P. 8888, Succursale Centreville, Montreal, QC H3C 3P8, Canada; E-mail:


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Efficacy of a home-visiting intervention aimed at improving maternal sensitivity, child attachment, and behavioral outcomes for maltreated children: A randomized control trial

  • Ellen Moss (a1), Karine Dubois-Comtois (a2), Chantal Cyr (a1), George M. Tarabulsy (a3), Diane St-Laurent (a2) and Annie Bernier (a4)...


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