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Title: Rationale, design, and methods for process evaluation in the Childhood Obesity Research Demonstration project

item JOSEPH, SITARA - Southern Methodist University
item STEVENS, ANDRIA - University Of Houston
item LEDOUX, TRACEY - University Of Houston
item O'CONNOR, TERESIA - Children'S Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)
item O'CONNOR, DANIEL - University Of Houston
item Thompson, Deborah - Debbe

Submitted to: Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/19/2015
Publication Date: 11/9/2015
Citation: Joseph, S., Stevens, A.M., Ledoux, T., O'Connor, T.M., O'Connor, D.P., Thompson, D.J. 2015. Rationale, design, and methods for process evaluation in the Childhood Obesity Research Demonstration project. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 47(6):560-565.

Interpretive Summary: Obesity prevention in at-risk families is challenging. Process evaluation can offer insight into what programs and procedures work best in a particular community. This research reports the cross-site process evaluation plan for three unique family-based obesity prevention demonstration projects in at-risk communities. This research provides an important example of how to work within the framework of a multi-site, multi-dimensional project to identify communities in which programs are most likely to be effective.

Technical Abstract: The cross-site process evaluation plan for the Childhood Obesity Research Demonstration (CORD) project is described here. The CORD project comprises 3 unique demonstration projects designed to integrate multi-level, multi-setting health care and public health interventions over a 4-year funding period in three different communities in California, Massachusetts, and Texas. All CORD demonstration projects targeted 2-12-year-old children whose families are eligible for benefits under Title XXI (CHIP) or Title XIX (Medicaid). The CORD projects were developed independently and consisted of evidence-based interventions that aim to prevent childhood obesity. The interventions promote healthy behaviors in children by applying strategies in 4 key settings (primary care clinics, early care and education centers, public schools, and community institutions). The CORD process evaluation outlined 3 main outcome measures: reach, dose, and fidelity, on 2 levels (researcher to provider, and provider to participant). The plan described here provides insight into the complex nature of process evaluation for consortia of independently designed multi-level, multi-setting intervention studies. The process evaluation results will provide contextual information about intervention implementation and delivery with which to interpret other aspects of the program.