Development and Implementation of an Experimental Study of the Effectiveness of Intensive In-Home Crisis Services for Children and their Families

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This article describes a 3-year research demonstration project originally funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and now funded in part by the Center for Mental Health Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This project, which was conducted in the Bronx, New York, examined the efficacy of 3 models of intensive in-home services as alternatives to hospitalization for children experiencing serious psychiatric crises. All programs were 4- to 6-week interventions. The first, Home-Based Crisis Intervention (HBCI), was modeled on the Homebuilders model of family preservation; the second, Enhanced HBCI (HBCI+), added respite care, flexible service money, parent advocate and support services, and additional staff training in cultural competence and violence management. Crisis Case Management, the third model, used case managers to assess child and family needs and link them to services, as well as respite care and flexible money. The specific features of the 3 program models, the research design, and data collection measures are described. The intake data on the children and families are presented, and implications for providing services and for future research are discussed.

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Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, v. 5, issue 2, p. 93-105