Health and Behavior Needs

Predictive Relationship of Child Health and Academic Achievement

There are few markers of child health and well-being outside of the absence of overt disease.

School performance is a ubiquitous and standardized measure of child health and well-being. We will link school records to state Medicaid records and Duke electronic health records in order to evaluate the relationship between health and academic achievement.


  • Can school metrics identify children at risk of abuse and neglect?
  • How does childhood primary care and/or complex health conditions in early childhood affect later school performance?
  • How do anti-depressive or anti-anxiety medications or opioids affect adolescent school performance?

Identifying Opportunities to Prevent Child Maltreatment in the Health and Social Services Systems

Investigators: Elizabeth J. Gifford, PhDWilliam E. Copeland, PhDLindsey Eldred Kozecke, Senior Research ScholarElizabeth Snyder-Fickler, Research ScientistLindsay Terrell, MD

Child abuse and neglect affects over six million U.S. children per year. However, preventing child maltreatment and its poor outcomes is challenging due to lack of timely identification of children at risk. We lack a clear understanding of the types of interactions that at-risk children and their families have with professionals who could recognize risk factors and direct families to resources to help prevent child maltreatment.

The goal of this study is to analyze how children with documented maltreatment have interacted with the healthcare system and local agencies prior to their referral to social services and/or law enforcement.

The study hopes to reveal patterns of interactions with health and social services that could assist with the prospective and early identification of children at risk of maltreatment, facilitate determination of those child- and family-level factors associated with different forms of maltreatment, and enable evaluation of how children who have experienced maltreatment are cared for by the health and social services systems.

Translating Duke Health-CHDI Pilot Grant Awardee

Incentivizing an Integrated Community-Clinic Pediatric Obesity Treatment Program