Mapping Evidence-Based Treatments for Children and Adolescents: Application of the Distillation and Matching Model to 615 Treatments From 322 Randomized Trials

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Abstract

This study applied the distillation and matching model to 322 randomized clinical trials for child mental health treatments. The model involved initial data reduction of 615 treatment protocol descriptions by means of a set of codes describing discrete clinical strategies, referred to as practice elements. Practice elements were then summarized in profiles, which were empirically matched to client factors (i.e., observed problem, age, gender, and ethnicity). Results of a profile similarity analysis demonstrated a branching of the literature into multiple problem areas, within which some age and ethnicity special cases emerged as higher order splits. This is the 1st study to aggregate evidence-based treatment protocols empirically according to their constituent treatment procedures, and the results point both to the overall organization of therapy procedures according to matching factors and to gaps in the current child and adolescent treatment literature.

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