Document Type

Master's Culminating Experience

Publication Date



Background: Previous research indicates that at least 60% of preventable deaths are caused by modifiable factors. Children, especially those under the age of five, are the most at-risk population for negative social determinants of health. Identifying and mitigating these factors could break the poverty impact cycle and promote wellness into adulthood, improving community health outcomes.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to describe trends in unmet social needs of children attending a well-child visit in Dayton, Ohio. Methods: Families attending a hospital-affiliated clinic during a well-child visit were asked to complete a simple, 10-item questionnaire. This cross-sectional study utilized collected data from October 3 to December 1, 2016, with 645 surveys completed and an age range of the patients from three days to 18 years.

Results: The study sample included a 94.7% return rate of the survey tool with 221 positive responses for unmet social needs (34.3%). Two or more unmet social needs were specified in 52.3% of the group requesting services with 39.7% of the group two years of age or less. The needs group requested 444 specific needs, a ratio of 2.04 needs per child. In addition, 99.1% of families identified in this program were previously unidentified in traditional social work channels.

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mph_peterson_elizabeth_poster.pdf (75 kB)

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