Family support in prevention programs for children at risk for emotional/behavioral problems.
We conducted a review of empirically based prevention programs to identify prevalence and types of family support services within these programs. A total of 238 articles published between 1990 and 2011 that included a family support component were identified; 37 met criteria for inclusion. Following the Institute of Medicine's typology, prevention programs were categorized as universal, selective, or indicated; programs containing more than one prevention level were characterized as multi-level. Family support types included those led by a mental health professional, led by a peer, or team-led. Among the 37 prevention programs reviewed, 27% (n=10) were universal, 41% (n=15) were selective, 16% (n=6) were indicated, and 16% (n=6) were multi-level. The predominant model of family support was professionally led (95%, n=35). Two (n=5%) provided team-led services. None were purely peer-led. In terms of content of family support services, all (100%, n=37) provided instruction/skill build. Information and education was provided by 70% (n=26), followed by emotional support (n=11, 30%) and instrumental or concrete assistance (n=11, 30%). Only 14% (n=5) provided assistance with advocacy. The distribution of models and content of services in prevention studies differ from family support within treatment studies. As family support is likely to be an enduring component of the child and family mental health service continuum, comparative effectiveness studies are needed to inform future development.
Cavaleri, MA; Olin, SS; Kim, A; Hoagwood, KE; Burns, BJ
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