Dr. Catherine A. Taylor, Associate Professor in the Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is spearheading a randomized control trial (RCT) to address parenting skills in a WIC population. Branded as the Tulane Innovations in Positive Parenting Study or TIPPS, this study is one of only 2 child maltreatment prevention projects funded in 2012 and 2013 by the CDC National Center of Injury Prevention and Control.

Designed to address the challenge, “Can brief parenting interventions reduce risk for child physical abuse?”, two brief educational interventions: Triple P and Play Nicely promote positive parenting and reduce the risk for child physical abuse. Triple P (Level 2 only) provides a brief, 30 minute one-on-one effective disciplinary consultation with a parenting professional for managing difficult child behavior. Play Nicely is a computer-based, interactive tool that teaches effective responses to difficult child behavior.

Along with a team of community partners,* TIPPS plans to recruit and interview 1200 caregivers who will be randomly assigned to an intervention and others to the control condition. Following a 3 month period, the participants will be interviewed again to test the hypothesis that those in the intervention groups are more likely to use effective positive parenting skills and less corporal punishment thereby creating less of a chance for child physical abuse. Since child physical abuse is a major public health problem that threatens physical, mental and behavioral health, studies have shown that employing home visitation programs with parents at high risk for abuse can reduce child abuse, however it is important to test low resource parenting programs which may be as effective and more accessible.

Anyone interested in learning more about the study can call or text (504) 383-5725 or email TIPPS@gmail.com. For more information on Dr. Taylor’s research on violence against children and effectiveness of positive parenting click here.

*The City of New Orleans Health Department, as part of its NOLA for Life violence prevention initiative, has been a primary partner in this project. Locally, our core community team members include Julie Hagan (New Orleans WIC Program Director), Paulette Carter (Founder and CEO of Children’s Bureau of New Orleans), and Chris Gunther (a TUSPHTM alum and the City of New Orleans’ Violence Prevention Lead). Partners at other universities include Ronald Prinz of the University of South Carolina and Seth Scholer of Vanderbilt University. TIPPS employs three staff members and eight SPHTM student Research Assistants. Dr. Taylor, the Principal Investigator, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences.