A Foundation for Evidence-Based Practice
A lack of longitudinal, evidence-based data and the diverse nature of pediatric feeding disorder (PFD) have often been cited as barriers to understanding the individualized needs of children with PFD. Feeding Matters and the PFD Alliance strive to identify, fund, and facilitate research and clinical studies that address these issues and move the field from utilizing practice-based evidence to relying on evidence-based practice.
PFD SCOPING REVIEW
There is an ongoing need to better identify gaps in the evidence used to guide assessment and management of PFD. A critical first step in planning next steps in research is to better understand the landscape of published work across various research methodologies. This scoping review by Estrem et al. examined 415 published studies on PFD between 2009 and 2019. The results of this scoping review highlighted the designs and methods used in research on PFD, revealed critical gaps in knowledge generation and barriers to intervention replication, and set the stage for future studies.
Estrem HH, Park J, Thoyre S, McComish C, McGlothen-Bell K. Mapping the Gaps: A Scoping Review of Research on Pediatric Feeding Disorder. Clinical nutrition ESPEN. 2022.
ECONOMIC IMPACT STUDY
Over the years, families have reported spending hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of dollars on expenses related to their child’s pediatric feeding disorder that is not covered or reimbursed by insurance. To fully and accurately capture the financial burden related to pediatric feeding disorder, Feeding Matters collaborated with the market research firm FirstEval to develop and manage an economic impact survey.
The results of the collaboration confirmed that it’s more than just emotional stress that parents endure when their child has a pediatric feeding disorder. Finances continue to be the top stressors, with families managing pediatric feeding disorder spending money on extra childcare, specialty foods, and travel to therapists to receive optimal care. These significant expenditures incurred by the families navigating PFD are not well understood by the reimbursement community, creating a barrier to coverage by most insurance companies.
Infant And Child Feeding Questionnaire
Understanding that the early detection and treatment of pediatric feeding disorder is critical to short and long-term success, in September 2008, the PFD Alliance identified the need for an early identification and engagement tool that could be easily integrated into a physician’s practice. Developed by world-renowned experts in pediatric feeding disorder, the Infant and Child Feeding Questionnaire is an interactive tool that identifies red flags in typical feeding development to enhance communication between healthcare professionals and families.
Published in the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition, the questionnaire is designed to promote the early identification of pediatric feeding disorder, thus prompting earlier intervention and referral. While the ICFQ is currently undergoing research to become a validated screening instrument, the questions have proven to be an indication for identifying a potential pediatric feeding disorder.
Partnering In PFD Research
Feeding Matters welcomes the opportunity to collaborate with the pediatric feeding community on research that advances the evaluation and treatment of PFD. From research grants to consensus meetings and case studies, Feeding Matters works with local and national organizations and individuals studying the often misunderstood and misdiagnosed condition of pediatric feeding disorder.