Reach Out and Read Implementation: A Scoping Review

Nila Uthirasamy, Mayuri Reddy, Jennifer R. Hemler, Katie A. Devine, David Cordoba, Shilpa Pai, Usha Ramachandran, Thomas I. Mackie, Manuel E. Jimenez

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Reach Out and Read (ROR) is an evidence-based literacy promotion intervention that leverages the near-universal access to children of primary care practices to promote optimal child development. While several studies document ROR's effectiveness, its implementation remains understudied. Objective: This scoping review examines the existing literature to better understand ROR implementation. Data Sources: PubMed, ERIC, Web of Science, Academic Search Premier, ProQuest Education Database, and CINAHL. Study Selection: We included peer-reviewed English-language papers focusing on ROR in an ambulatory setting in North America. Data Extraction: Extracted variables were informed by the Template for Intervention Description and Replication checklist and included publication year, title, author(s), clinic location, study design, study aim, ROR implementation, modifications, implementation assessment, barriers, facilitators, and outcomes. Results: Seventy-one papers were included, of which 43 were research articles. We identified substantial variation in ROR implementation including differences in components delivered. A considerable number of research articles did not assess ROR implementation. The most common barriers to ROR implementation were at the system level (ie, financing and inadequate time). Modifications and enhancements to ROR are emerging; most address barriers at the clinician and family level. Limitations: This review was limited to published English language papers focusing on ROR. Conclusions: ROR implementation varies across studies, and many did not assess implementation. Consistent reporting and assessment of ROR implementation could create opportunities to better understand the mechanisms underlying ROR's effects and inform other early childhood interventions that seek to promote optimal development at the population level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)520-549
Number of pages30
JournalAcademic pediatrics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


  • Reach Out and Read
  • early childhood
  • literacy promotion
  • scoping review


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