The Infant CARE-Index is one of the simplest and most versatile screening measures assessing risk to the parent-child relationship and parental sensitivity. It assesses mother-infant interaction from birth to fifteen months of age based on a short, videotaped play interaction of 3-5 minutes. Once the coder is trained, coding of an interaction takes about 15-20 minutes. The measure assesses carers (including foster carers) on three scales: sensitivity, covert/overt hostility and unresponsiveness. There are four scales for infants: co-operation, compulsivity, difficulty and passivity. These scales tend to be related to the maternal scales in the order listed above.
The scales are: – 1. Are highly correlated with the infant Strange Situation assessment patterns of attachment 2. Can be used in assessments to differentiate between dyads who are at risk, struggling or flourishing 3. Can help differentiate between possible cases of intrusive (physical) abuse and neglect 4. Can be used before and after interventions, and to assess their effectiveness of interventions.
Who is it for? The Infant CARE-Index is a useful, portable tool for a wide range of Health and Social Care Professional whose work involves assessing and mounting interventions to improve parent-child interaction in the first 15 months of the child’s life. It can be used with families from all backgrounds and cultures and with infants and toddlers, including those with developmental problems such as physical and learning disabilities.