The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJ) has just funded a 4-year, $15 million initiative to help eight states increase kids' enrollment in Medicaid and the states' Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Grantees include three states in which Reclaiming Futures is operating -- Illinois, Massachusetts, and New York -- as well as Alabama, Louisiana, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. An estimated 7 million children in the United States are eligible for -- but not enrolled in -- Medicaid and CHIP. Along with other needed health care, these programs can pay for alcohol and drug treatment for teens.
Want to know more about adolescent brain development?
The Campaign for Youth Justice is hosting an online interview with Vassar psychologist Abigail Baird on juvenile brain development tomorrow, February 19th at 4:30PM EST. Tune in if you can -- you can call in with questions -- and if you can't, the show will be available for download later.
UPDATE: You can catch the recorded show at the same link, or on the Campaign for Youth Justice's "blog talkradio" page.
[John Kelly, pictured below, is Associate Editor at Youth Today. His complete article is available to subscribers on the paper's website.-- Ed.]
In Indiana, a couple of techies built a case management system, Quest, that connected all the integral parties associated in juvenile and family court cases. It enabled judges to handle motions and docket changes online, staff to draft orders in real time, and juvenile justice officials to measure data and progress seamlessly.
Staffs in counties that use Quest swear by it; observers usually leave in awe when they are first introduced to it. I first saw how the system works when Indianapolis Judge Marilyn Moores off-handedly showed it to an audience during a presentation about truancy courts. About half the crowd stayed after the session to ask questions, but not about the truancy court.
A couple days ago, we posted six tips on engaging family members in your efforts to reform the juvenile justice system and how it works with teens with drug and alcohol problems. Grace Bauer, who authored the tips, wrote to say that some excellent additional resources are coming:
Normally at this time of year, we at the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) are busily preparing for the Joint Meeting on Adolescent Treatment Effectiveness (JMATE) – a national conference on teen substance abuse treatment. This would have been our 5th year for the conference, which has steadily grown in size and scope. Unfortunately, we’re not going to be able to hold the meeting this year, for reasons beyond our control. We do expect, however, to be able to have the meeting again in 2010.
For those of you who may not be familiar with JMATE, you can still view the website from last year, where many of the presentations can be downloaded for your use. There are also links to the earlier meetings and their presentations.
Even though it was a holiday week, I ran across a number of interesting stories and resources.
Does your state have a plan for improving treatment for teens with substance abuse problems?
Jim Vollendroff and I had the privilege to attend numerous meetings and contribute to the creation of a Washington State strategic plan on adolescent substance abuse treatment. (Jim is the Chemical Dependency Coordinator for King County, WA, and a Reclaiming Futures Treatment Fellow.) The Reclaiming Futures Model was our concrete framework to assure that the entire group focused on system areas that need to be addressed and/or changed.
Here's an introduction to the plan from David Jefferson, the former CSAT Grant Coordinator housed at the Washington State's Division of Alcohol and Substance Abuse (DASA):
Physicians and Lawyers for National Drug Policy (PLNDP) has partnered with the National Judicial College to create Alcohol and Other Drug Problems: a Public Health and Public Safety Priority, A Resource Guide for the Justice System on Evidence-Based Approaches. (Order free copies for yourself and your team; download the PDF; or access it on the web.)
As the first, five-year pilot phase of Reclaiming Futures came to a close, each of the participating Fellowships published a report that contains highly valuable information for any community attempting to improve the way its system deals with youth caught in the cycle of drugs, alcohol and crime. (Reclaiming Futures uses professional "Fellowships" of judges, probation officers, treatment professionals, community members, and local project directors to drive change in local communities. The Fellows from all participating communities gather several times a year to share what they're learning.)
These Fellowship reports are available on the Reclaiming Futures website, but at the Project Directors' conference last week, I was asked to repost them in one place. And why not? After all, they're not just useful for Reclaiming Futures communities, they're useful for any community that wishes to change the way it does business for teens in the justice system who need addiction treatment. So, here they all are --
For those of you who liked our post listing resources for identifying evidence-based adolescent treatment models, here's another valuable resource.
It's a compendium of evidence-based treatment practices, compiled by the Southern Coast Addiction Technology Transfer Center (SCATTC) last February. (This guide contains both adult and juvenile practices - adolescent-related material begins on p. 42.)
I've just spent a profitable hour nosing around the SAMHSA Office of Applied Studies website. There, you can find lots of useful comparative information on rates of teen alcohol and drug use. For example, if you want an authoritative estimate of the percentage of youth aged 12-17 who used marijuana or binge drank in the past month, this is the place.
- Curious about what works in teen drug treatment, or are you looking for a database of evidence-based adolescent substance abuse treatment programs?
- Want to learn more about the research behind a particular treatment model?
- Need a refresher on what's out there, or need a citation for a grant proposal?
Here's a handy list of five public registries of evidence-based treatment programs, including those targeting adolescent substance abuse:
- State of Oregon Addictions and Mental Health Division's List of Approved Practices
- SAMHSA’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs & Practices
- Community Guide from Helping America's Youth
- University of Washington’s EBP Database
- Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) Model Programs Guide
I found this list in an excellent guide on adolescent treatment put together by the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and the State of North Carolina, with funding from SAMHSA and the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT). On page six of the guide, you'll find two more online resources on evidence-based practices: your bonus for checking it out!
Go here for help implementing your evidence-based practice; and if you know of other registries that track evidence-based adolescent substance abuse treatment models, please leave a comment!