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Dr Arbour implements and evaluates interventions to promote child development and reduce inequities in the U.S. and abroad, using a combination of experimental, ethnographic and quality improvement methodologies. She has particular interests in methods for adapting evidence-based practices across diverse contexts and populations, and in scale.
Dr. Arbour’s expertise in continuous quality improvement methods (CQI) includes experience adapting them to a diversity of disciplines and contexts to improve clinical, public health and education outcomes. She leads integration of CQI methods in
• the US Department of Maternal and Child Health’s first national quality improvement collaborative for home visiting services (HV CoIIN, Home Visiting Collaboration for Improvement and Innovation Network), which improved home visiting services and outcomes for low-income families with young children in four topic areas: child developmental surveillance and screening, maternal depression, breastfeeding extension and family engagement.
• the adaptation and spread of Project DULCE, an intervention to address social determinants of health and improve understanding and promotion of healthy development among families with infants 0 to 6 months in pediatric clinics in 3 states,
• a community-level collaboration in New York City aimed at improving child development in two high-poverty neighborhoods
• a school-based intervention to improve children’s health and learning in public preschools in Chile (Un Buen Comienzo, A Good Start), conducted as a cluster-randomized trial in a first phase (2008-2011) and quasi-experimental design in a latter expansion (2011-present).
Dr. Arbour also conducts quality improvement capacity-building efforts, including formal curriculum development and delivery in Spanish and English with health, public health, and education professionals and paraprofessionals. Her materials, measures and methods have been used in Chile to train more than 750 health and education professionals in 30 public health clinics and 160 public preschools, and in the U.S. to train hundreds of home visitors serving 4000 low-income families through 35 participating home visiting agencies in 12 states and 2 tribal entities. She co-leads one professional development course in continuous quality improvement in Lima, Peru as a faculty for the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), and co-directs a CQI Practicum for public health practitioners for the Administration of Children and Families’ Design Options for Home Visiting Evaluation (DOHVE), in partnership with James Bell Associates and the Education Development Center.
In addition, Dr. Arbour has conducted interventions and assessments in disaster contexts, including after the tsunami in Indonesia (2005), the earthquake in Haiti (2010), and the earthquake in Chile (2010). Dr. Arbour holds a BA in Biological Anthropology from Swarthmore College, an MD from Harvard Medical School and MPH from the Harvard School of Public Health.