The goal of the proposed research is to test the implementation effectiveness of the Family Check-Up (FCU), an ecologically based child and family intervention designed to reduce problem behavior and coercive family interactions and prevent child maltreatment. The FCU and related interventions build on 15 years of programmatic research that began with the design and testing of the Adolescent Transitions Program (ATP) group parenting curriculum and that culminated into a general ecological approach to child and family intervention called the EcoFIT model (Dishion & Kavanagh, 2003; Dishion, Reid, & Patterson, 1988; Dishion & Stormshak, 2007; Stormshak & Dishion, 2002). In this research, we plan to collaborate with 4 major mental health providers in an ? urban community to improve their services for families by use of the EcoFIT model and FCU ? intervention. The Family Check-Up is a 3-session intervention designed to engage and motivate ? families in treatment. It is an empirically validated, family-centered approach to treatment that has ? been used to effectively reduce the growth of problem behavior, enhance parenting skills, and ? reduce family violence. Eight therapists will receive intensive training and support in the FCU ? intervention and EcoFIT model. One hundred twenty families with youth ages 10-15 will be ? randomly assigned to receive the FCU or treatment as usual in the agency. Measures will include a ? multirater assessment battery of parenting, family violence, child behavior and adjustment collected ? at baseline, after the Family Check-Up, weekly during treatment, and monthly for 3 months ? following termination. Of particular interest is increasing the potential for therapists to focus on ? family management skills known to increase successful child adjustment and to decrease the ? coercive family processes associated with child maltreatment. Outcomes of interest will include ? successful therapist adoption of the FCU and EcoFIT model, fidelity of implementation, increased ? family enrollment and retention in the program, improvements in family management skills, ? increased positive parenting skills, and the prevention of child maltreatment. ? ? ?

Public Health Relevance

The goal of this research is to test the implementation effectiveness of the Family Check-Up (FCU) in community mental health agencies. The FCU is an ecologically based child and family intervention empirically validated to reduce problem behavior, family violence, and child maltreatment. In this research, mental health agencies in an urban setting will use the FCU with families at risk of child maltreatment;reductions in family violence and youth problem behavior are expected.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC)
Research Project (R01)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZCE1-FXR (01))
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Thierry, Joann
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University of Oregon
Other Health Professions
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United States
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Smith, Justin D; Stormshak, Elizabeth A; Kavanagh, Katherine (2015) Results of a pragmatic effectiveness-implementation hybrid trial of the Family Check-up in community mental health agencies. Adm Policy Ment Health 42:265-78