Purpose

Motor vehicle crashes cause the death of an American child every 3 hours, more than any other cause. When installed correctly, car seats reduce risk of serious injury and death to infants and young children. Unfortunately, a large portion of child restraints is installed incorrectly. A network of trained technicians work across the country to assist parents in achieving correct use of child restraints through scheduled "car seat checks," where technicians work with parents to install restraints in their vehicles. Car seat checks are effective in reducing errors in child restraint installations. However, the services are highly underutilized. The present study evaluates use of interactive virtual presence technology (also called interactive merged reality) to remotely assist parents to install child restraints correctly into their vehicles. Building from small pilot studies on the topic, the investigators will conduct a randomized non-inferiority trial to evaluate whether parents who install child restraints while communicating with a remote expert technician via interactive virtual presence achieve installations and learning that are not inferior in their safety to parents who install restraints live with a remote technician onsite. The investigators will recruit 1476 parents at 7 locations nationwide and randomly assign consenting parents to install their child restraint either via interactive virtual presence or with a live technician. The correctness of installation safety will be assessed using objective checklists, both following installation and again four months later. The investigators aim to demonstrate that child restraint installation is accurate (>90% correct) when conducted remotely via interactive virtual presence, that such installations are not inferior to the accuracy of installation with a live on-site expert, and that parents learn and retain information about correct child restraint installation.

Condition

Eligibility

Eligible Ages
Over 15 Years
Eligible Genders
All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers
Yes

Inclusion Criteria

  • own a vehicle and have a child who rides in that vehicle using a child restraint fastened with a harness.

Exclusion Criteria

  • not physically capable of installing a child restraint into a vehicle, which may exclude individuals with various disabilities.
  • not able to communicate orally in English or Spanish, although significant demand for training in other languages may alter this exclusion criteria in the future

Study Design

Phase
N/A
Study Type
Interventional
Allocation
Randomized
Intervention Model
Factorial Assignment
Intervention Model Description
randomized non-inferiority trial
Primary Purpose
Prevention
Masking
Single (Outcomes Assessor)

Arm Groups

ArmDescriptionAssigned Intervention
Experimental
Interactive virtual presence
Participants will engage remotely with a certified child restraint technician via interactive virtual presence. They will work together to help the participant install his or her child restraint properly into his or her vehicle. Standard Safe Kids Worldwide protocols will be followed, with the exception that the interaction will occur remotely via interactive virtual presence.
  • Behavioral: interactive virtual presence
    parents will install car seat through remote guidance via interactive virtual presence
Active Comparator
Live technician
Participants will engage live with a certified child restraint technician. They will work together to help the participant install his or her child restraint properly into his or her vehicle. Standard Safe Kids Worldwide protocols will be followed.
  • Behavioral: live technician
    parents will install car seat through guidance from a live certified technician who is present

Recruiting Locations

UAB Youth Safety Lab, University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, Alabama 35294
Contact:
Anna Johnston, MA
205-934-4068
safetylab@uab.edu

More Details

Status
Recruiting
Sponsor
University of Alabama at Birmingham

Study Contact

Detailed Description

Motor vehicle crashes cause the death of an American child every 3 hours, more than any other cause. When installed correctly, car seats (also called "child restraints") reduce risk of serious injury and death to infants and young children roughly threefold. Unfortunately, a large portion of child restraints is installed incorrectly. A network of trained technicians, many affiliated with Safe Kids Worldwide, work across the country to assist parents in achieving correct use of child restraints through scheduled "car seat checks," where technicians work with parents to install restraints in their vehicles. Car seat checks are effective in reducing errors in child restraint installations. However, the services are highly underutilized due to barriers in access, scheduling complications, and resources to staff the car seat checks sufficiently to meet demand.

The present study evaluates use of interactive virtual presence technology (also called interactive merged reality) - joint and simultaneous remote verbal and visual interaction and exposure to the same 3D stimuli - to remotely assist parents to install child restraints correctly into their vehicles. If effective, this technology could supplement or replace car seat checks, significantly reduce the number of errors made in car seat installations nationwide, and revolutionize how government, industry, and non-profit agencies help parents install restraints.

Building from small pilot studies on the topic, the investigators propose a large randomized non-inferiority trial to evaluate whether parents, including especially underserved parents in rural areas and/or of underrepresented racial or ethnic minority background, who install child restraints while communicating with a remote expert technician via interactive virtual presence achieve installations and learning that are not inferior in their safety to parents who install restraints live with a remote technician onsite. Non-inferiority trials are a type of randomized trial whereby a novel treatment (in this case, interactive virtual presence to install child restraints) is compared to an existing treatment known to be effective (in this case, live one-on-one installation of restraints) to demonstrate the novel treatment does not perform inferiorly to the existing treatment known to be effective.

To accomplish the study goals, the investigators will recruit 1476 parents at 7 Safe Kids locations nationwide and randomly assign consenting parents to install their child restraint either via interactive virtual presence or with a live technician. The correctness of installation safety will be assessed using objective checklists, both following installation and again four months later. The investigators aim to demonstrate that child restraint installation is accurate (>90% correct) when conducted remotely via interactive virtual presence, that such installations are not inferior to the accuracy of installation with a live on-site expert, and that parents learn and retain information about correct child restraint installation.

Notice

Study information shown on this site is derived from ClinicalTrials.gov (a public registry operated by the National Institutes of Health). The listing of studies provided is not certain to be all studies for which you might be eligible. Furthermore, study eligibility requirements can be difficult to understand and may change over time, so it is wise to speak with your medical care provider and individual research study teams when making decisions related to participation.