Effectiveness of the Wraparound Process for Children with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders: A Meta-Analysis

Article

Abstract

Wraparound is a team-based service planning and coordination process intended to improve outcomes for children and youth with serious emotional and behavioral disorders and support them in their homes, schools, and communities. Given the substantial resources devoted to implementing wraparound, a meta-analysis of outcome studies was conducted to better understand current empirical support for this process. A literature search identified seven studies between 1986 and 2008 that documented the effects of youth receiving wraparound compared to control groups. Mean treatment effects across outcome domains ranged from medium for youth living situation (0.44) to small for mental health outcomes (0.31), overall youth functioning (0.25), school functioning (0.27), and juvenile justice-related outcomes (0.21). The overall mean effect size across studies was 0.33. Interpretation of results was complicated by the lack of consistent documentation of implementation fidelity across studies and conditions, variations in target population and intended outcomes, and methodological concerns. The authors conclude that, though the published wraparound research base is expanding and findings are largely positive, it continues to be in a preliminary state of development. However, there are insufficient data to support calls for wraparound’s acceptance or dismissal based on the strength of existing studies.

Keywords

Wraparound Meta-analysis Effectiveness Community-based Children and adolescents 

References

References marked with one asterisk indicate primary studies included in the meta-analysis (references with two asterisks indicate secondary study reports)

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center on Disability and Community InclusionUniversity of VermontBurlingtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Division of Public Behavioral Health and Justice PolicyUniversity of Washington School of MedicineSeattleUSA

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