Objective: Tested a family-based group problem-solving intervention, "Families Taking Control," (FTC) to improve school functioning and health-related quality of life (HRQL) for children with sickle cell disease.
Method: Children and caregivers completed questionnaires assessing HRQL and school functioning and children completed performance-based measures of IQ and achievement at baseline and 6 months later. Families were randomized to the intervention (FTC, n = 42) or delayed intervention control (DIC, n = 41) group. FTC involved a full-day workshop followed by 3 booster calls.
Results: There were no differences between FTC completers (n = 24) and noncompleters (n = 18). FTC group (n = 24) and DIC group (n = 38) did not differ significantly on primary outcomes at follow-up: number of formal academic and disease-related accommodations, individualized education plan/504 service plan, school absences, school HRQL, or academic skills.
Conclusions: Although families found FTC to be acceptable, there were no intervention effects. Challenges of the trial and implications for future research are discussed.
Keywords: family-based intervention; randomized controlled trial; sickle cell disease.
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