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Diane Rae Davis, PhD and Amber Cleverly, MSW - page 44 / 80





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Interview with Substance Abuse Treatment Clinical Supervisor

An interview with a Clinical Supervisor for a community-based substance abuse treatment center in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Region I, on September 2, 2004, confirmed the improved communication of the treatment center staff with IDHS and CPS social workers as a result of the SAL. According to the clinical supervisor, the addition of a SAL:

  • “Brought CP counselors (social workers) out of their building. Identified to us that some counselors truly understand addiction, while others still look at substance abuse as a character defect.”

  • Strengthened our relationship to family issues, which was waning because of no state funding for families in substance abuse treatment. The SAL raised our awareness of the negative consequence of children being taken away.

  • Was helpful in coordinating with IDHW when our staff couldn’t get in touch with the CP worker. The SAL could find out what was going on in the family.

  • With PTP, was helpful to the treatment process itself. For example, in breaking through the defenses of the “stainless steel women” who tend to be in abusive relationships and use alcohol/drugs as emotional coping tools, PTP helped them begin to see they were in charge of their choices.

Interview with SAL, Region III

An interview with the SAL on May 11, 2005, documented the following examples that help to improve communication, coordination, and collaboration among herself as a SAL, the treat- ment provider agencies, and IDHW:

  • “Many of the CPS staff have limited education around substance abuse. They got their questions answered through me.”

  • Providing an in-service training to CPS staff on ASAM criteria and levels of care, so they don’t get triangulated by clients. Also do “20-minute blurbs” in staff meetings to help social workers work more effectively with their clients who have substance abuse issues. For example, “Call your meth clients to remind them of meetings, because that cognitive skill is not functioning.”

  • Helping CPS supervisors look at options for addressing the needs of children who grow up in a households with substance abuse issues, such as group therapy or individual therapy with a counselor dually trained in adolescence and substance abuse.

  • Attending the Multi-Disciplinary Team Meeting in Payette, Idaho, (hosted by CPS and at tended by police, shelter care, and children’s mental health and sexual abuse treatment providers)

  • Served as Member of the Children’s Mental Health council – a multidisciplinary council to assist families in accessing wraparound services.

Replication of the Project

The IDHW system experienced the importance of having certified substance abuse counselors closely connected to CPS to facilitate the disposition and treatment of parents affected by substance abuse. Before the project ended, a commitment was made to expand SALs and the PTP to all regions in the state. The project manager anticipates funding through a combination of federal dollars and other sources (e.g., TANF/SSBG, PSSF [Family Preservation, Time-lim- ited Family Reunification], and Substance Abuse funding.

Idaho Pre-Treatment Program


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