Incorporating a Healthy Living Curriculum within Family Behavior Therapy: A Clinical Case Example in a Woman with a History of Domestic Violence, Child Neglect, Drug Abuse, and Obesity
Women reported to child protective service agencies frequently report problems that significantly interfere with the health and well-being of their children and themselves. Behavioral treatment programs appear to be effective in managing these co-existing problems, such as domestic violence and substance abuse. However, evidence-supported interventions are rarely exemplified in complicated clinical cases, especially within child welfare settings. Therefore, in this case example, we describe the process of adapting an evidence-supported treatment to assist in managing significant co-existing health-related problems in a mother who was referred due to child neglect and drug abuse. At the conclusion of therapy, the participant reported improvements in perceived family relationships, illicit drug use, child maltreatment potential, whereas other health-related outcomes were mixed. Most improvements were maintained at 4-month follow-up. Issues relevant to implementing evidence-based treatments within community contexts are discussed, including methods of increasing the likelihood of valid outcome assessment, managing treatment integrity, and adjusting standardized treatments to accommodate co-occurring problems.
This research was supported by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (1R01DA020548-01A1) awarded to Brad Donohue. The authors wish to thank Sally K. Miller, PhD, APN, FAANP and Associate Professor, UNLV School of Nursing for her work in completing the initial in-home health evaluation/physical for the current project.