Telemonitoring of motor skills using the Alberta Infant Motor Scale for at-risk infants in the first year of life

J Telemed Telecare. 2022 Jun 6;1357633X221102250. doi: 10.1177/1357633X221102250. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: Remote assessment creates opportunities for monitoring child development at home. Determining the possible barriers to and facilitators of the quality of telemonitoring motor skills allows for safe and effective practices. We aimed to: (1) determine the quality, barriers and facilitators of Alberta Infant Motor Scale (AIMS) home videos made by mothers; (2) verify interrater reliability; (3) determine the association between contextual factors and the quality of assessments.

Methods: Thirty infants at biological risk aged between three and ten months, of both sexes, and their mothers were included. Assessments were based on asynchronous home videos, where motor skills were evaluated by mothers at home according to AIMS guidelines. The following were analyzed: video quality; stimulus quality; camera position; and physical environment. The video characteristics were analyzed descriptively. The intraclass correlation coefficient was used to calculate interrater reliability and the regression model to determine the influence of contextual factors on the outcome variables. Significance was set at 5%.

Results: Remote assessment of AIMS exhibited high image and stimulus quality, and a suitable physical environment. Interrater reliability was high for all domains: prone (r = 0.976); supine (r = 0.965); sitting (r = 0.987); standing (r = 0.945) and total score (r = 0.980). The contextual factors had no relation with assessment quality.

Discussion: Assessments conducted remotely by the mothers showed high video quality and interrater reliability, and represent a promising assessment tool for telemedicine in at-risk infants in the first year of life.

Keywords: Motor skills; infants; remote patient monitoring; telecare; telehealth.