A family-based child welfare program addressing cases of child abuse and neglect

Multisystemic Therapy for Child Abuse and Neglect (MST-CAN) is an intensive therapy that provides a holistic approach. MST-CAN families typically come to the attention of child protective services with a substantiated case of abuse within the last 180 days. MST-CAN is delivered to families by a team that includes therapists, a crisis caseworker, and a part-time psychiatrist.

MST-CAN uses specific treatment techniques including:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for anger management
  • CBT treatments for the impact of trauma or posttraumatic stress disorder on adults and children
  • Reinforcement-based therapy (RBT) for adult substance abuse
  • Behavioral family therapy for communication and problem-solving
  • Functional analysis for family conflict and the use of force in parenting and more as needed

MST-CAN Interventions:

  • All interventions evidence-based or evidence-informed
  • Interventions developed along an analytical model
  • Analytical model guides the therapist to assess factors that are driving clinical problems

MST-CAN services are provided through and evidenced base approach with the intent to:

  • Keeping families together
  • Assuring that children are safe
  • Preventing abuse and neglect
  • Reducing mental health difficulties experienced by adults and children
  • Increasing natural social support

MST-CAN Treatment is:

  • Provided to all family members
  • An intensive program with regular contact (from three times a week to daily)
  • Structured so the family sets treatment goals

Treatment Delivery

  • In the Home or Places Convenient to the Family
  • At times that meet the needs of the Family
  • Available 24 hrs. a Day, 7 Days a week for Crisis On-Call Services
  • Ranges from 6-9months

Session Intensity

  • Session length depends on the needs of the family
  • Sessions may range from 50 minutes to 2 hours
  • Multiple type of sessions may be conducted in one day
  • Parental drug screening and session
  • Family communication and problem solving