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Gestational age at birth, chronic conditions and school outcomes: a population-based data linkage study of children born in England

Libuy, Nicolás; Gilbert, Ruth; Mc Grath-Lone, Louise; Blackburn, Ruth; Etoori, David; Harron, Katie; (2022) Gestational age at birth, chronic conditions and school outcomes: a population-based data linkage study of children born in England. ternational Journal of Epidemiology , Article dyac105. 10.1093/ije/dyac105. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

INTRODUCTION: We aimed to generate evidence about child development measured through school attainment and provision of special educational needs (SEN) across the spectrum of gestational age, including for children born early term and >41 weeks of gestation, with and without chronic health conditions. METHODS: We used a national linked dataset of hospital and education records of children born in England between 1 September 2004 and 31 August 2005. We evaluated school attainment at Key Stage 1 (KS1; age 7) and Key Stage 2 (KS2; age 11) and any SEN by age 11. We stratified analyses by chronic health conditions up to age 2, and size-for-gestation, and calculated population attributable fractions (PAF). RESULTS: Of 306 717 children, 5.8% were born <37 weeks gestation and 7.0% had a chronic condition. The percentage of children not achieving the expected level at KS1 increased from 7.6% at 41 weeks, to 50.0% at 24 weeks of gestation. A similar pattern was seen at KS2. SEN ranged from 29.0% at 41 weeks to 82.6% at 24 weeks. Children born early term (37-38 weeks of gestation) had poorer outcomes than those born at 40 weeks; 3.2% of children with SEN were attributable to having a chronic condition compared with 2.0% attributable to preterm birth. CONCLUSIONS: Children born with early identified chronic conditions contribute more to the burden of poor school outcomes than preterm birth. Evaluation is needed of how early health characteristics can be used to improve preparation for education, before and at entry to school.

Type: Article
Title: Gestational age at birth, chronic conditions and school outcomes: a population-based data linkage study of children born in England
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/ije/dyac105
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1093/ije/dyac105
Language: English
Additional information: © The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Epidemiological Association. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: England, Gestational age, academic performance, chronic conditions, special educational needs, whole-population cohort
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Health Informatics
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Population, Policy and Practice Dept
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Social Research Institute
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10149202
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