Infant Ment Health J. 2018 Nov;39(6):656-673. doi: 10.1002/imhj.21745. Epub 2018 Oct 26.


Attachment Biobehavioral Catch-up (ABC; Dozier et al., 2006) is a 10-week, in-home intervention primarily for early childhood aged children (ages 6 months-2 years). The ABC intervention seeks to teach parents how to provide nurturing care and engage in appropriate interactions with their children. ABC has been identified as a Level 1 evidence-based practice by the California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare. However, to date, there has been no systematic review presenting the overall evidence behind ABC available in a peer-reviewed journal. The objective of this review is to address this gap by synthesizing prior literature and evidence, specifically evidence from randomized control trials (RCTs), regarding the effectiveness of the ABC intervention and to determine the contexts in which the intervention has been implemented. To complete this review, literature was searched across three bibliographic databases and relevant Web sites. Only RCTs examining child outcomes were included in the review. Using identified search procedures, 10 articles discussing RCTs which tested the efficacy of ABC were identified. Findings indicate that ABC is effective, when implemented with child-welfare-involved children, at improving emotion regulation, improving externalizing and internalizing behaviors, increasing normative developmental functioning, and attachment quality. Sample information from the 10 RCTs identified is presented as well as additional study characteristics.

Keywords: Attachment Biobehavioral Catch-Up; Attachment Biobehavioral Catch-up; Nivelación de Bio-Conducta de Afectividad; Rattrapage d'Attachement et Biocomportemental; compte-rendu systématique; early childhood; evidenced-based intervention; evidenzbasierte Intervention; frühe Kindheit; intervención con base en la evidencia; intervention basée sur des preuves; petite enfance; revisión sistemática; systematic review; systematisches Review; temprana niñez; برنامج التعلق واللحاق البيولوجي السلوكي ، الطفولة المبكرة ، مراجعه منهجيه ، التدخل القائم علي الأدلة; „Attachment Biobehavioral Catchup“; 依附生物行為追趕; 幼兒期; 循證干預; 早期乳幼児期; 根拠に基づく介入; 系統的検討; 系統評價.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Child Welfare / psychology*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Education, Nonprofessional / methods*
  • Evidence-Based Practice
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Object Attachment
  • Parenting / psychology*
  • Parents / psychology