The study described in this thesis explores ethnic differences in the process of help-seeking for emotional and behavioural problems in 5-6-year-old children in a Dutch preventive care setting. Research has shown that early detection of emotional and behavioural problems in childhood is possible and can be beneficial to a child’s development, well-being and health [1-3]. Preventive child health care services, like we know in the Netherlands, can be regarded as an ideal setting for early identification and early management of emotional and behavioural problems through its routine health examinations of the entire population of children. However, identification of problems in itself is not a guarantee for an adequate solution of these problems. To justify screening for emotional and behavioural problems, insight into pathways in care following identification is necessary. Such insight can show which children with emotional and behavioural problems need care and whether these children receive the care they need. Until now, little is known about these pathways in care, especially pathways in care of young children from ethnic minority groups. It is important to investigate if such pathways apply in the same manner to ethnic minority children as to ethnic majority children. Ethnic differences in mental health problems are frequently cited as justification for the need to intervene in particular populations. However, understanding the reasons behind these disparities is often challenging and critical for the effectiveness of such interventions. Until now, this understanding is still largely lacking. Therefore, the first aim of this thesis is to describe ethnic differences in pathways in care after detection of emotional and behavioural problems in young children. The second aim of this thesis is to explore ethnic differences in determinants of care use through quantitative research methods as well as through qualitative research methods.

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This study was funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (ZonMW grant numbers 100-004-006 and 157-001-017). Financial support for the publication of this thesis by the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Erasmus MC, is gratefully acknowledged.
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam
F.C. Verhulst (Frank) , M.C.H. Donker (Marianne)
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Bevaart, F. (2013, March 12). Ethnic Differences in Pathways in Care for Young Children with Problem Behaviour: road work in progress. Retrieved from