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For too many traumatized children and their families, chronic stressors such as poverty, substance abuse, and family or community violence—coupled with an overburdened care system—pose seemingly insurmountable barriers to treatment. This empowering book provides a user-friendly blueprint for making the most of limited resources to help those considered the “toughest cases.” Evidence-based strategies are presented for effectively integrating individualized treatment with services at the home, school, and community levels. Written in an accessible, modular format with reproducible forms and step-by-step guidelines for assessment and intervention, the approach is grounded in the latest knowledge about child traumatic stress. It has been recognized as a treatment of choice by state mental health agencies nationwide.
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Glenn N. Saxe, MD, formerly the Chairman of Child Psychiatry at Boston Medical Center, is Associate Chief of Psychiatry for Research and Development at Children’s Hospital, Boston and Harvard Medical School. He leads a program devoted to finding and building mental health program models that will be helpful for inner-city children and families with severe and complex social, psychological, and medical problems. Trauma systems therapy (TST) was developed over almost 10 years of effort, and is now used in many different clinics and agencies across the United States. Dr. Saxe also leads the Center for Children at Risk of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN). B. Heidi Ellis, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center, with joint appointments in Psychology and Pediatrics. Her primary area of interest is in developing interventions for traumatized youth and their families, particularly those who typically do not access mental health care. As associate director of the Center for Children at Risk of the NCTSN, she has dedicated her efforts to making mental health care more relevant and accessible cross-culturally, with a specific focus on helping refugee children.
Julie B. Kaplow, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan Medical School. Her primary research interest is the psychological consequences of childhood trauma, with a focus on identifying effective coping strategies that can help to inform interventions. Dr. Kaplow has conducted research and clinical work with various populations of traumatized children, including those suffering from sexual abuse, traumatic injuries, and bereavement. She has served on the Traumatic Grief Task Force of the NCTSN.
"A remarkably thorough book. Trauma systems therapy (TST) provides a theoretical rationale for integrating various systems and providing case management and advocacy services when needed. The treatment model covers a wide therapeutic scope: from primary safety issues to innovative ideas for working with highly traumatized children. The authors clearly demonstrate their in-depth understanding of the community mental health setting and the types of barriers clinicians face. Presenting a wealth of information on how to implement the model, this book is an excellent training tool for graduate students, interns, and seasoned clinicians."--Lisa Amaya-Jackson, MD, MPH UCLA-Duke National Center for Child Traumatic Stress
"I am quite pleased to see the publication of this book. The trauma systems therapy model fits very closely with how we at the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD) believe traumatized children can and should be treated by providers of mental health services. Glenn Saxe and his colleagues have translated complicated concepts into a brilliant, user-friendly approach that is understandable to clinicians and applicable in most systems. This important work should have a positive impact on the lives of thousands of children and families."--Kevin Ann Huckshorn, RN, MSN, National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors
"This book is an exciting addition to the field of child and adolescent trauma treatment. The well-organized volume introduces the reader to trauma systems therapy (TST) in an engaging, readable format. Informed by recent research on the impact of trauma on the developing brain, TST offers a concise, structured assessment and intervention plan. What is unique about this approach is that the treatment is focused not only on the child, but also on the systems that support the child. The link between research, theory, and front-line clinical practice is clear and direct. This text will be invaluable to clinicians in the field and to students learning about trauma treatment and child and adolescent therapy."--Susan Hansen, LCSWR, RPTS, Ulster County Mental Health Department, Kingston, New York
"First and foremost a pragmatic manual, Collaborative Treatment of Traumatized Children and Teens provides an organizing paradigm and practical tools to address the pain and family chaos of child abuse and domestic and community violence. Written for all members of the therapeutic team, it integrates the emerging neuroscience of stress and trauma together with a wealth of clinical experience. Recommended for all disciplines, this intervention draws on the strengths, synergy, and support of a team approach to the complexities of working with traumatized children and their families."--Frank W. Putnam, MD, Cincinnati Children’s Medical Center
"This impressive work, representing a collaboration of child psychiatry and psychology, exemplifies the next generation of treatment manuals. The authors' approach goes beyond a narrow focus on psychopathology to encompass the social, interpersonal, and environmental contexts in which it occurs. The book incorporates the latest thinking on everything from the neurobiological effects of trauma to the disorganized social systems that may exacerbate these effects. This clearly outlined, step-by-step treatment approach will be invaluable for all clinicians dealing with trauma in the difficult social contexts where it most often occurs. Every child clinician will want to be familiar with this approach."--David H. Barlow, PhD, Boston University
"Trauma Systems Therapy provides an elegant way to systematize intervention planning for complex trauma cases, whose multiplicity of problems can often overwhelm the clinician's ability to think clearly and set priorities. Anyone working with families with difficult, unstable lives will appreciate the lucid, clear approach contained in this valuable manual. The curricula of all social work and clinical psychology training programs should include trauma systems therapy."--Robert Abramovitz, MD, Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services, New York, New York
"This is an outstanding text that provides, for the first time, an integrative model of mental health care for children and adolescents exposed to traumatic life events, abuse, and community violence."--Terence M. Keane, PhD, National Center for PTSD, VA Boston Healthcare System and Boston University
"The authors adopt a broad definition of trauma, including issues such as ongoing stress, poverty, family and community violence, and parental mental illness and substance misuse. This inclusivity makes the book realistic and relevant to a wide range of child and adolescent groups....A valuable resource that strikes the balance well between just the right amount of jargon-free theory and maintaining its focus on practical issues. The book is friendly and easy to read....Here is a book that offers a model that moves theory to practice in order to help all of us who endeavour to treat, support, and care for traumatised children and adolescents." (Counselling Children and Young People 2009-06-20)
"Saxe and colleagues have chosen appropriate case studies, which illustrate the complex nature of trauma and its multiple effects on children and families from diverse backgrounds....The authors of this text have done well in bridging a gap between theory and practice, while providing an easy-to-read text, which serves as a guidebook for effective treatment of traumatic stress in children and teens." (Family Journal 2009-06-20)
"The book is clearly written and with multiple icon keys and case studies so that it takes the form of a well-developed treatment manual....This is an excellent volume, particularly for the front-line provider interested in a manualized hands-on introduction to interventions with traumatized children, teens, and their families." (Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine 2009-06-20)
"An insightful and organized guide to the treatment of childhood trauma and can be used by professionals in a myriad of settings and at any stage in their professional development....The authors provide helpful advice on the treatment of childhood traumatic stress that can be used by clinicians, teachers, social service workers, lawyers, administrators, policy makers, students, parents, as well as teenagers who have experienced trauma. This tool helps guide individuals in the treatment of children as well as in the coordination of services under a financially constrained system of care.... The book is effectively written in a friendly, interactive, and readable style aimed at a broader audience....Saxe, Ellis, and Kaplow have spent almost a decade developing this exemplary tool for those involved in the treatment of and advocacy for children suffering from traumatic stress. This book can be an invaluable guide to people in the beginning of their careers as well as to experts in the field." (Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 2009-06-20)
"This is a very important book for anyone working with abused and neglected children and their care system....To assist the reader, not only is the book laid out carefully, it also contains copious tables exemplifying assessments and examples of questions to assess various elements of their treatment....It addresses an underserved population, often with vexing problems in great need. Saxe, Ellis, and Kaplow have done a salutary job detailing their treatment paradigm and organizing it in a highly readable, comprehensive, and thorough manner. Their many years of focused work had enabled them to take this challenging issue and present it with clarity, organization and detail. Their presentation is highly effective. Any social service organization and all psychologists, social workers, psychiatric nurses, and psychiatrists working with traumatized and especially urban traumatized children will find this book very valuable....Any graduate psychology program that seeks to work with underserved, urban or other challenging populations should give this book serious consideration as an addition to the course syllabus." (Child and Family Behavior Therapy 2009-06-20)
"An excellent resource for therapists who work with the children and families served by public mental health and child welfare systems. This is a practical treatment manual that incorporates all of the major techniques or practice elements used in proven trauma treatments....Saxe and colleagues have organized their book to be easily accessible for busy clinicians and other mental health workers who may find it difficult to tackle denser textbooks....the language is clear and forthright, without a lot of jargon, and the description of the techniques are simple and understandable. This book should be a helpful resource for training staff who are new to the field to work with traumatized young people....I really like this book. I recommend it highly for clinicians working in children's mental health and for students in this field. In fact, I have been trying to find a way to buy copies for all of our state's contracted provider agencies, because I think they all could improve their practice by using at least some aspects of this approach. Although the book focuses on intensive outpatient treatment settings, the approach clearly could be applied in many of the other settings that make up our array of services, such as therapeutic group home or foster home programs." (PsycCRITIQUES 2009-06-20)
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