Service Spotlight: Family Centered Treatment (FCT)

Family Centered Treatment

Family Centered Treatment (FCT) is an evidenced-based practice and a model of home-based treatment that aims to lower the rate of children being placed out of their home for residential treatment. This service is implemented through direct intervention with both the child and the family, and incorporates other systems such as schools, child welfare and justice, as well as primary care physicians. FCT provides direct 24-hour crisis intervention to the families it supports.

Goals of FCT:
• Family stability
• Reduction in hurtful and harmful behaviors
• Emotional and functioning balance for the family
• Long-term positive behavioral changes
• Discovery of family strengths necessary for sustaining change

Family Centered Treatment: A Success Story
Before being referred to Family Centered Treatment (FCT), Joseph* spent 11 years struggling to live at home with his mother and siblings and was placed outside the home many times. Due to his dual diagnosis of intellectual disability and mental health needs, his mother felt at times that she didn’t know another way to keep him safe. From ages 5 to 16, he was unable to live at home for more than two to three months at a time.

The placements took a toll, preventing the mother and son from establishing a strong emotional connection and attachment. Joseph’s mom knew she needed him at home. Eight months after starting FCT, the family has learned new ways to handle crises and Joseph is still living at home. He has a part time job and is taking college courses. His mom is pursuing a degree in psychology to be able to help others. More importantly, Joseph and his mom have developed an emotional bond that opened communication, and Joseph has been able to share with his mom how he felt each time he went into placement.

FCT is specifically targeted towards:

• Individuals who have previously had residential treatment with unsuccessful family reunification
• Individuals at risk for higher and more restrictive levels of residential treatment
• Individuals who have been hospitalized but have had little prior treatment and the hospital is recommending residential services
• Individuals currently in residential treatment where discharge is being prolonged due to lack of family systems in place to make the transition successful
• Individuals with extensive histories of unsuccessful outcomes in other treatment settings
*names have been changed to protect privacy.
Randomized Controlled Trial
Review frequently asked questions about the Randomized Controlled Trial of Family Centered Treatment (FCT) in North Carolina.

Updated October 10, 2018 to include Randomized Controlled Trial of Family Centered Treatment (FCT) in North Carolina FAQ document.
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