Doctor examining a baby while being held by their mother

Initiatives

Enriching ECHO (Environmental Influences on Child Health Outcomes) with High-risk Pregnancies and Children with Disabilities

The primary goal of the ECHO Program is to bring diverse participant populations together into one large ECHO Cohort so that ECHO investigators and the wider community of scientists can address research questions about the effects of a broad range of early environmental exposures on child health and development. 

As 1 of the 45 awarded research groups, the overarching goal of the Enriching ECHO with High-risk Pregnancies and Children with Disabilities cohort is to advance disabilities inclusivity in ECHO research by enriching the research program in children with disabilities and by leveraging existing data from ECHO participants with disabilities. The scientific premise is that psychosocial environmental exposures (social determinants of health, stress, social environment, discrimination) and modifiable personal factors (parenting style, social supports, mental health) impact the physical and emotional health of children with disabilities resulting in definable outcomes of function, well-being, and participation in community and family life. ECHO is uniquely positioned to examine environmental factors that allow children with disabilities (and, by extension, all children) to thrive.

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Status:

September 2023 to May 2025

  • Who: NICHQ, Hackensack Meridian Children’s Health, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Lurie Children’s Hospital, and the Cerebral Palsy Foundation.
  • Funder: National Institutes of Health
  • Our Role: NICHQ will provide data and project management support for the longitudinal research study. Specifically, NICHQ will be responsible for the electronic administration of all surveys, assuring a consistent and culturally sensitive approach to data collection and follow-up for all participants and high fidelity to the ECHO protocol. NICHQ will also track and report progress towards key cohort engagement, collaboration, leadership, recruitment, and data collection metrics.