A comprehensive trauma assessment is an in-depth assessment of the impact of trauma a child has experienced; how the trauma impacts the relationship with the child's caregivers and the child's functioning; and recommendations for services or community supports for the child and family in order to heal and remain stable in the home setting. The purpose of assessment is to obtain clinical recommendations to guide caseworkers in developing case plans to assist the child and family with addressing identified trauma, behaviors, and diagnoses that meet clinical criteria. These assessments are not intended to provide answers to best interest decisions (such as permanency, parenting time or placement). Best interest decisions should be made by the caseworker based on a holistic review of the child's case and following supervisor discussion and support.
Staff must utilize the appropriate Children's Trauma Assessment Center (CTAC) Trauma Screening Checklist based on the age of the child, 0-5 or 6-18 years of age. Caseworkers are required to administer the Children's Trauma Assessment Center (CTAC) Trauma Screening Checklist to each child victim involved in an ongoing CPS or foster care case according to the following timeframes:
- Within 30 days of case opening.
- When a Category 1 Children's Protective Services (CPS) cases transfers
to foster care.
- Within 180 days of the initial screening.
- Prior to case closure.
The score of the Trauma Screening Checklist will determine if a referral for a Mental Health Assessment or a Comprehensive Trauma Assessment is necessary. Referral for Mental Health Assessment/treatment and/or Comprehensive Trauma Assessments are not intended as standard practice for every child. Referrals for comprehensive trauma assessments should be made if:
- Residential placement is being considered for a child because of disrupted
community placements due to child's behavior.
- Recommended by a mental health clinician or doctor.
Please see FOM 802 for additional information. If you have further questions or concerns regarding Comprehensive Trauma Assessments, please contact Erica Barrett at BarrettE1@michigan.gov.