An Essential Component of Primary Care Pediatric Practice

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Significance of Pediatric Developmental Assessment in Primary Care Provision and Essential Components

In the management of pediatric patients, developmental assessment is a health provider’s guiding factor in the initiation of primary care. It enables the medic to understand the patient’s prenatal, natal, postnatal, and any medical history. The health provider also deduces information on the immunization schedules, any congenital diseases affecting the patient such as autism, imperforate anus, webbed fingers, cleft lip/palate, Cushing syndrome, Down syndrome, spina-bifida, ambiguous genitalia, and/or myelomeningocele (Glascoe, 2015). Lastly, the pediatric developmental assessment provides the doctor with information on the nutritional status of the patient. For instance, if a patient has a BMI of less than 15 or mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC) within the red margin, then he or she suffers from malnutrition. As a result, the health provider will include a nutritional review of the patient’s management (Schickedanz, Dreyer, & Halfon, 2015).

Components of developmental assessment include a consultation appointment, an initial step that entails a meeting between the health provider, patient, and his/her parent to discuss family concerns (McManus et al., 2015). Indirect assessment is the second component that involves the provision of multiple questionnaires that identify specific social, motor, and communication abilities in addition to behavioral limitations and strengths. This evaluation enables a health provider to identify the basic concern that is affecting the child’s ability to meet his/her perspective and determine the best intervention required to address the issue (Pollack et al., 2014). Direct assessment is the third component. It involves additional observations designed to examine the child’s ability to exhibit developmental delay symptoms and its impact on the functional capacity of the patient in a variety of settings. In the last step, clinical report and feedback sessions are scheduled after completing the indirect and direct assessment. Through this course, the parent may review reports, discuss findings, and request a detailed recommendation from the psychologist.

Tools I would use to Assess Specific Components of Development

According to the American pediatric developmental assessment standards, there are a variety of tools used in the assessment of pediatric progress. The tools are classified into multi-domain screening and social-emotional screening. They are used by family members, other caregivers, and professionals (Marshall, Coulter, Gorski, & Ewing, 2016). Multidomain assessment methods that might be completed by the parents or other caregivers involve the age and stage questionnaire, child development inventories, kent inventory of developmental skills, the ounce, parent’s evaluation of the developmental status, and the pediatric syndrome checklist (High et al., 2014). A multi-domain assessment method that might be completed by the professionals includes Battelle development inventory screening test, Bayley infant Neuro-development assessment, Brigance assessment, learning developmental indicators, early childhood inventory, and infant/toddler and family methods (Marshall et al., 2016). Social, economic assessment tools, on the other hand, involve methods such as behavioral assessments of the social styles and emotions of the baby, Carey temperament scale, Eyberg child behavior inventory, kindergarten and pre-schools behavior scale, mental health assessment, Devereaux early childhood assessment program, and Achenbach system of empirically-based assessment.

Child development inventory is the most accurate method as compared to the others since it entails the details of progressive growth from 3 to 72 months and health records of the first 3 to 18 months.

Components I would consider in Assessing the Basic Biological Functioning and Wellbeing of Pediatric Patients

According to the information provided above, the direct assessment component is best in assessing the basic functional biology and well being of the pediatric patient because it allows the medical practitioner to gather all the information about the patient and do a thorough physical exam to identify any abnormality (Kolko & Perrin, 2014). This component entails a physical examination of aspects such as blood pressure, weight, height, head circumference, oral state, possible hearing injury, skin disorders, anemic conditions, and psychological health assessment among others. These components are important in providing the doctor with the overall basic biological functioning and wellbeing of the pediatric patient.


Glascoe, F. P. (2015). Evidence-based early detection of developmental-behavioral problems in primary care: What to expect and how to do it. Journal of Pediatric Health Care, 29(1), 46-53.

High, P. C., Klass, P., Donoghue, E., Glassy, D., DelConte, B., Earls, M.,…Schulte, E. E. (2014). Literacy promotion: An essential component of primary care pediatric practice. Pediatrics, 134(2), 404-409.

Kolko, D. J., & Perrin, E. (2014). The integration of behavioral health interventions in children’s health care: Services, science, and suggestions. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 43(2), 216-228.

Marshall, J., Coulter, M. L., Gorski, P. A., & Ewing, A. (2016). Parent recognition and responses to developmental concerns in young children. Infants & Young Children, 29(2), 102-115.

McManus, M., White, P., Barbour, A., Downing, B., Hawkins, K., Quion, N.,…McAllister, J. W. (2015). Pediatric to adult transition: A quality improvement model for primary care. Journal of Adolescent Health, 56(1), 73-78.

Pollack, M. M., Holubkov, R., Funai, T., Clark, A., Berger, J. T., Meert, K.,…Berg, R. A. (2014). Pediatric intensive care outcomes: Development of new morbidities during pediatric critical care. Pediatric critical care medicine: A journal of the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies, 15(9), 821.

Schickedanz, A., Dreyer, B. P., & Halfon, N. (2015). Childhood poverty: Understanding and preventing the adverse impacts of a most-prevalent risk to pediatric health and well-being. Pediatric Clinics, 62(5), 1111-1135.

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NursingBird. "An Essential Component of Primary Care Pediatric Practice." September 29, 2021.