Accessing Information about Evidence-Based Practices

Summaries Of The Two Interventions And Research Regarding The Effectiveness

Family Behavior Therapy (FBT) for Adolescents

FBT is a comprehensive, evidence-based treatment program for substance abuse and related problems, particularly for children and adolescents aged from 11-17 years (Robinson, Dolhanty & Greenberg 2015). FBT for adolescents helps young people with substance abuse dependence and co-existing challenges such as school non-attendance, depression, and conducts problems. The treatment encompasses behavioral goals, planning, stimulus control, and training on communication skills to help the victim develop and sustain relationship, self-control and job search skills. The treatment is done in an outpatient clinic, and involved qualified mental health professionals, and takes between 6 months and one year depending on the intensity of the substance abuse (Donohue & Azrin 2011). FBT has proven effective in both adolescent and adults as it addresses not only substance abuse but also co-occurring challenges including depression, child mistreatment, family discord and conduct disorders (Robinson, Dolhanty & Greenberg 2015). It integrates behavioral astringent with contingency management.

Prolonged Exposure Therapy for Adolescents (PE-A)

PE-A is a therapeutic intervention for adolescents who have been exposed to a traumatic experience, and in the process, developed symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The treatment programs entail subjecting the patients to situations that make that nervous and helping them to memorize the traumatic event retelling it (imagine exposure). The primary objective of the therapy is to help patients process emotions developed from a traumatic experience, and subsequently lessened post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) and other symptoms linked to trauma (Capaldi, Zandberg, & Foa, 2017). Research with an active control indicated that PE-A helps to improve the symptoms of depression, PTSD and the patient’s everyday life experiences (Rossouw, Yadin, Alexander & Seedat 2018). PE-A follows modules on case management, motivational interviewing, information-collection concerning the trauma, treatment rationale and explains everything by systematically confronting circumstances linked to the trauma and how the adolescents can overcome fear and avoidance (Capaldi, Zandberg, & Foa, 2017).


Recommendations for Tiffani’s Social Worker

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between FBT and PE-A Interventions

            When providing a recommendation, it is essentials to understand the client’s previous encounters and the coping mechanism developed from the experiences. The program must also take into account the values and culture of the client (Hendricks & Testa (2012). Tiffany has been exposed to sexual exploitation, and her past relationship with the parents were not healthy. She also has a history of substance abuse. It evident that the girl was traumatized both in her childhood and adolescent period. As such factors to consider between FBT and PE for adolescents, including the client’s age, withdrawal symptoms from substance use, mental challenges the patient is coping with and past traumatic experiences. Besides, the program selected must meet the needs of the client and have research-based evidence indicating that it is effective.

The Social Work Skills That the Staff Would Require

The necessary social work skills needed for the staff to effectively implement the intervention include empathy, non-judgment, patience, genuine, and understanding, which are essential when working with children and families. The therapist must be able to work with adolescents and their families, acquiring and continuing to gain knowledge to help the client throughout the recovery process effectively. Study shows that engaging families of clinically referred adolescents in treatment can be challenging times, and may require an intensive approach, incorporating the caregivers, youth and extra-family support system (Hogue & Liddle, 2009). The caregiver must therefore be able to develop and implement intensive and well-articulated, family-based engagement strategies to implement the FBT and PE interventions for the adolescents effectively.

The Training Required To Implement Each Intervention

            In most cases, a social worker practice within his or her area of competence and develop and improve professional expertise through continuous training. As such, training is necessary when implementing an intervention. The implementation of both Family Behavior Therapy (FBT) and Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE) for adolescents require training in substance abuse and mental health, trauma-informed care and peer-support as well as training on how to developed family-based engagement strategies.  

An Evaluation of Evidenced-Based Practice

Yes, as a beginning researcher, it is possible to have enough knowledge to benefit from researching evidence-based practices, particularly by applying the 5As of EBP taught in the clinical research class. The fundamental five steps in EBP nursing cycle: ask, acquire, appraise, apply and assess prepare clinical researchers with adequate knowledge to use evidence-based research for clinical practices. EBP in nursing is all about the integration of clinical expertise, research evidence and the patient’s preferences, to enable nurses to deliver individualized patient-care (Hain 2017). The integration of evidence-based research into the course work enables beginning nursing researchers to have enough knowledge to benefit from researching evidence-based practices.

            Research increases confidence in the intervention as you already have a rough idea of what you are dealing with, and possible outcomes. In essence, confidence expectations revolved around an individual’s competence, which is boosted by conducting more research within the area of practice, in this case, in the intervention with Tiffany. The information provided about the client, Tiffany is not enough to make sufficient decision regarding interventions. Critical element such as the exact age, specific values and cultures of the family is missing, and are essential in informing evidence-based recommendation for intervention.


Capaldi, S., Zandberg, L. J., & Foa, E. B. (2017). Prolonged Exposure Therapy for Adolescents with PTSD: Emotional Processing of Traumatic Experiences. In Evidence-based treatments for trauma-related disorders in children and adolescents (pp. 209-226). Springer, Cham.

Donohue, B., & Azrin, N. H. (2011). Treating adolescent substance abuse using family behaviour therapy: A step-by-step approach. John Wiley & Sons.

Hain, D. J. (2017). Focusing on the fundamentals: Comparing and contrasting nursing research and quality improvement. Nephrology Nursing Journal44(6), 541-545.

Hendricks, M. L., & Testa, R. J. (2012). A conceptual framework for clinical work with transgender and gender nonconforming clients: An adaptation of the Minority Stress Model. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice43(5), 460.

Hogue, A., & Liddle, H. A. (2009). Family‐based treatment for adolescent substance abuse: controlled trials and new horizons in services research. Journal of family therapy31(2), 126-154.

Robinson, A. L., Dolhanty, J., & Greenberg, L. (2015). Emotion‐focused family therapy for eating disorders in children and adolescents. Clinical psychology & psychotherapy22(1), 75-82.

Rossouw, J., Yadin, E., Alexander, D., & Seedat, S. (2018). Prolonged exposure therapy and supportive counselling for post-traumatic stress disorder in adolescents in a community-based sample, including experiences of stakeholders: study protocol for a comparative randomized controlled trial using task-shifting. BMC psychiatry18(1), 288.