Adverse childhood experiences impact the mental, physical, and relational health of individuals across their lifespan (Felitti et al., 1998). Within families, caregiver exposure to adversity is important to consider when delivering therapeutic interventions to children (Eslinger et al., 2015; Gardner et al., 2014; Hagan et al., 2017). In this study, archival data were analyzed to understand the role of caregiver adversity in Eco-Systemic Structural Family Therapy (ESFT) outcomes. The study sample included a total of 378 caregivers’ datasets from seven Family Based Mental Health Services (FBMHS) programs. Caregiver past-year adversity scores and childhood adversity scores were obtained through administration of the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) survey (Murphy et al., 2014). ESFT outcome was determined through clinician report of child client discharge level of care, number of days hospitalized during treatment, and length of stay in treatment. Within a quantitative research design, logistic regression and bivariate correlation were used to determine any relationship between the variables. Results showed caregiver adversity did not predict treatment outcome. However, caregiver current adversity and treatment length of stay were negatively correlated (rs (376) = –.104, p = .044) as were length of stay and client discharge level of care (rs (260) = –.388, p = .000). These findings suggest ESFT benefits families regardless of caregiver adversity level and that increased clinician attention to caregiver current adversity is important to ensure families receive the full benefits of ESFT. Implications for optimizing ESFT and future directions for ESFT clinical research are discussed.
|Commitee:||Whitman, Todd, Jones, C. Wayne|
|Department:||Counseling and College Student Personnel|
|School Location:||United States -- Pennsylvania|
|Source:||DAI-A 82/8(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Counseling Psychology, Social work|
|Keywords:||Adverse childhood experiences, Attachment, Eco-systemic structural family therapy, Family based mental health services, Trauma, Treatment related caregiver factors|
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