Does Model Matter? Examining Change Across Time for Youth in Group Homes.
Group homes are a frequently used but controversial treatment setting for youth with mental health problems. Within the relatively sparse literature on group homes, there is some evidence that some models of treatment may be associated with more positive outcomes for youth. This article explores this possibility by examining differences across time for youth served in group homes utilizing the Teaching Family Model (TFM) and geographically proximate homes using more eclectic approaches. Data come from a longitudinal quasi-experimental study that included 554 youth. Results suggest that youth showed, on average, significant and rapid improvement during initial months in a group home. Improvement did not differ for TFM and non-TFM homes during this initial period. Post-discharge results, though, show that TFM was associated with continued improvement after discharge and significantly better outcomes by 8 months post-discharge. Results also discuss youth-level factors that may influence outcomes as well as need for additional work to more fully understand processes and practices that are key for maximizing and maintaining youths' positive outcomes during and after group home placements.
Farmer, EMZ; Seifert, H; Wagner, HR; Burns, BJ; Murray, M
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