ARCH Lab Publishes Paper Validating OCHS-EBS-B in MY LIFE Study

The ARCH Lab recently published a paper titled “Validating the Ontario Child Health Study Emotional Behavioural Scales-Brief Version (OCHS-EBS-B) in children with chronic physical illness” in the journal Child: Care, Health and Development using data from the ongoing MY LIFE Study.

Children and youth with physical illness are at greater risk of developing mental health issues than their healthy peers. In order assess child mental health, brief scales that can be used in both clinical and research settings are needed. This paper assessed the validity and reliability of parent-reported Ontario Child Health Study Emotional Behavioural Scale-Brief Version (OCHS-EBS-B) scores.

This study compared agreement between the OCHS-EBS-B and the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview for Children and Adolescents (MINI-KID), a structured diagnostic interview aligned with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 5 and International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10. Results showed OCHS-EBS-B scores were moderately correlated with the MINI-KID and significantly higher among children with versus without physical-mental comorbidity.

Additional findings demonstrate psychometric evidence that the OCHS-EBS-B is a valid and reliable measure of mental health in children with chronic physical illness. Its brevity and robust psychometric properties make the OCHS-EBS-B a strong candidate for routine use in integrated pediatric physical and mental health services.

Assessing child mental health in a psychometrically robust and efficient manner is critical in supporting integrated physical and mental services within pediatric care settings. Ongoing administration of the OCHS-EBS-B in larger, varied samples is needed.