Child Welfare Trauma Referral Tool
Taylor, N., Steinburg, A., & Wilson, C. (2006). The Child Welfare Trauma Referral Tool. San Diego, CA: Chadwick Center for Children and Families, Rady Children's Hospital - San Diego.
This measure is designed to help child welfare workers make more trauma-informed decisions about the need for referral to trauma-specific and general mental health services. It is to be completed by the child welfare worker through record review and key informants (i.e., natural parent, foster parent, child therapist, school-aged children or adolescents if appropriate, and other significant individuals in the child's life). History of exposure to a variety of types of trauma, the severity of the child's traumatic stress reactions, attachments problems, behaviors requiring immediate stabilization, and the severity of the child's other reactions/behaviors/functioning are documented. Strategies for making recommendations to general or trauma-specific mental health services by linking the child's experiences to their reactions are then given.
This varies throughout the measure, most are yes/no/suspected and then ages are added to some items and demographic items are included as well.
There is a shorter version of the form available.
No psychometrics have been collected on the tool.
For use by child welfare caseworkers with children ages 0-18 who are involved in the child welfare system.
Pros & Cons/References
- This measure allows the caseworker to organize information that they have already gathered as part of the investigation in order to determine if a child needs to be referred for a trauma-specific treatment. It does not require an additional interview with the child or caregiver in order to make this determination.
- The tool provides a "trauma-informed lens" for caseworkers to use when making decisions.
- There is no established reliability and validity on this measure.
- Since neither the child nor the caregiver are informants on this measure and a specific interview is not used, it is possible that the caseworker would be missing crucial information that would assist them in completing the tool and determining the kind of treatment that would be appropriate for a given child.