B R I G H T F U T U R E S G U I D E L I N E S F O R H E A LT H S U P E RV I S I O N O F I N FA N T S , C H I L D R E N , A N D A D O L E S C E N T S
What Is Bright Futures?
Bright Futures is…
…a set of principles, strategies, and tools…
The Bright Futures principles acknowledge
the value of each child, the importance of
family, the connection to community, and
that children and youth with special health
care needs are children first. These principles
assist the health care professional in deliver-
ing, and the practice in supporting, the high-
est quality health care for children and their
Strategies drive practices and health care
professionals to succeed in achieving profes-
sional excellence. Bright Futures can assist
pediatric health care professionals in raising
the bar of quality health care for all our chil-
dren, through a thoughtfully derived process
that will allow them to do their jobs well.
This book is the core of the Bright Futures
tools for practice. It is not intended to be a
textbook, but a compendium of guidelines,
expert opinion, and recommendations for
health supervision visits. Other available
Bright Futures tools include the Bright Futures
in Practice series, which provides in-depth
discussions of Nutrition, Oral Health, Physical
Activity, and Mental Health. A Bright Futures
Toolkit will be designed, as a companion to
this book, to assist health care professionals
in planning and carrying out health supervi-
sion visits. It contains numerous charts, forms,
screening instruments, and other tools that
increase practice efficiency and efficacy.
…that are theory based, evidence driven...
The rationale for a clinical decision can bal-
ance evidence from research, clinical practice
guidelines, professional recommendations, or
decision support systems with expert opinion,
experience, habit, intuition, preferences, or
values. Clinical or counseling decisions and
recommendations also can be based on legis-
lation (eg, seat belts), common sense not like-
ly to be studied experimentally (eg, sunburn
prevention), or relational evidence (eg, televi-
sion watching and violent behavior). Most
importantly, clinical and counseling decisions
are responsive to family needs and desires or
patient-centered decision making. It follows
that much of the content of a health supervi-
sion visit is the theoretical application of sci-
entific principles in the service of child and
family health.
Certainly, strong evidence for the effective-
ness of a clinical intervention is one of the
most persuasive arguments for making it
a part of child health supervision. On the
other hand, if careful studies have shown an
intervention to be ineffective or even harmful,
Bright Futures is a set of principles, strategies, and tools that are theory
based, evidence driven, and systems oriented that can be used to improve
the health and well-being of all children through culturally appropriate
interventions that address their current and emerging health promotion
needs at the family, clinical practice, community, health system, and policy
An Introduction to the third edition of Bright Futures: Guidelines
for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents
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