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Child Youth Serv Rev. 2011 Oct 1;33(10):2018-2026.

Profiles of Systems Involvement in a Sample of High-Risk Urban Adolescents with Unmet Treatment Needs.

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The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, At Columbia University, 633 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10017, P: 212-841-5207, F: 212-956-8020.


This study examined profiles of involvement in four systems (education, child welfare, legal, and treatment) in a sample of 253 high-risk urban adolescents with unmet behavioral health needs. Self-report data were collected on multiple dimensions of involvement within each system, demographics, and DSM-IV diagnoses. Latent class analysis revealed four profiles: Education System: Academic and Disciplinary, Education System: Academic Only, Legal/Juvenile Justice Involved, and Multiple Systems/Child Welfare. Profiles differed based on gender and psychiatric diagnoses. Boys were overrepresented in Education System: Academic and Disciplinary and Legal/Juvenile Justice Involved, and girls were overrepresented in Multiple Systems/Child Welfare. The two education system focused classes were characterized by depressive disorders and ADHD. Youth in Legal/Juvenile Justice Involved and Multiple Systems/Child Welfare were characterized by conduct disorder and substance abuse. Implications for assessment and treatment planning for high-risk youth and for the organization of community-based behavioral health services are discussed.

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