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Child Abuse Negl. 2008 Nov;32(11):1072-9. doi: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2007.12.011.

Recovery coaches and substance exposed births: an experiment in child welfare.

Author information

1
School of Social Work, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Substance exposed infants present a major challenge to child welfare and public health systems. Prenatal substance exposure and continued substance abuse in the home are associated with a wide range of adverse social, emotional, and developmental outcomes. The objective of the current study is to evaluate the use of recovery coaches in child welfare.

METHODS:

The current study is longitudinal and utilizes an experimental design. The sample includes 931 substance abusing women enrolled in a Title IV-E Waiver Demonstration, 261 in the control group, and 670 in the experimental group. Women in the experimental group received traditional services plus the services of a recovery coach. Administrative records are used to indicate substance exposure at birth.

RESULTS:

Of the 931 women enrolled in the waiver demonstration, 21% of the control group and 15% of the experimental group were associated with a subsequent substantiated allegation indicating substance exposure at birth. Cox proportional hazards modeling indicates that women in the experimental group were significantly less likely to be associated with a new substance exposed birth.

CONCLUSIONS:

The use of recovery coaches in child welfare significantly decreases the risk of substance exposure at birth. Integrated and comprehensive approaches are necessary for addressing the complex and co-occurring needs of families involved with child protection.

PMID:
19036450
DOI:
10.1016/j.chiabu.2007.12.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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