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Boost Your Telehealth Skills: Risk Assessment and Crisis Intervention for Youth

Boost Your Telehealth Skills: Risk Assessment and Crisis Intervention for Youth

In a time when the mental health of youth is increasingly at risk, the need for effective telehealth strategies is paramount. The research article "Risk Assessment and Crisis Intervention for Youth in a Time of Telehealth" provides critical insights for practitioners to enhance their skills and better support at-risk youth.

Understanding the Risks

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing mental health issues among youth, with increased social isolation, family conflict, and economic stressors contributing to higher rates of depression, anxiety, and suicidality. As school-based mental health professionals, it is crucial to recognize the symptom clusters that put youth at risk of harm to self, including nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI) and suicidal ideation.

Best Practices for Telehealth Interventions

Several therapeutic modalities have shown promise in addressing these issues through telehealth:

Safety Planning and Risk Assessment

Conducting risk assessments via telehealth requires a thorough understanding of safety protocols and guidelines. Key steps include:

Involving Families

Incorporating parents and caregivers into the treatment process is essential. Family involvement can enhance treatment engagement, improve communication, and provide a supportive home environment. Programs like DBT-A and the SAFETY program have demonstrated the benefits of family-based interventions.

Utilizing Technology

Leveraging technology can enhance the effectiveness of telehealth interventions. Smartphone apps and online programs offer accessible and cost-effective tools for youth and their families. Apps like Crisis Care and MY3 provide skill-based content and safety planning resources that can be easily integrated into telehealth sessions.

Conclusion

As we navigate the challenges of providing mental health services remotely, it is essential to stay informed of best practices and emerging research. By implementing evidence-based telehealth interventions and involving families, we can better support at-risk youth during these unprecedented times.

To read the original research paper, please follow this link: Risk Assessment and Crisis Intervention for Youth in a Time of Telehealth.


Citation: Holland, M. L., Hawks, J., Morelli, L. C., & Khan, Z. (2021). Risk Assessment and Crisis Intervention for Youth in a Time of Telehealth. Contemporary School Psychology, 25(1), 12-26. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40688-020-00341-6

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