SACA/Service-Use Assessments


Services Assessment for Children and Adolescents was authored by Stiffman, A. R., Horwitz, S. M., Hoagwood, K., Compton, W., Cottler, L., Bean, D. L., Narrow, W. E., & Weisz, J.R. (2000). This measure was used by Fast Track to collect parents' reports of their children's mental health service-use history. The instrument asks a maximum of 331 questions on service use by their child (plus 10 introductory demographic questions).

Abstract

The SACA (Stiffman et al., 2000) was used by Fast Track to collect parents' reports of their children's mental health service-use history. The instrument asks a maximum of 331 questions on service use by their child (plus 10 introductory demographic questions). The initial 24 of the 331 are 'gate-level' questions which ask the parent about the child's lifetime use covering 23 different categories of inpatient and outpatient service use. If the parent indicates that their child had never received any services in the presented categories, they would only be asked these initial 24 questions. A positive response on lifetime service-use for a particular category (e.g., psychiatric hospital) would lead to a separate section that asked more in-depth questions about service use in the past 12 months for that category, including when child first received services, name and address of most recent service provider, total number of days served, child's reaction to service, who referred child to service and how the service was paid for.

No scales were derived for this instrument.

Analysts can examine group differences in degree and pattern of mental health service use as well as examine the relationship between characteristics of service use with predictors from other instruments. Reported use of services is somewhat limited in early years of the SACA, especially in more specialized service categories. Analysts should note the degree of response for services before generating descriptive statistics or using outcomes in statistical models. In general, most distributions will be 'zero-modal' so examination of distribution characteristics is highly advised. There are also several logistical problems with the original SACA data at the time of this technical report. First, variables are inconsistent as to their numeric/character status. Subjects' data for service use in the past 12-months is set to missing if that subject had indicated they had never received that service; thus, 12-month data has misleadingly high rates of missing data, even though those subjects truly did not receive services in the past 12-months. These missing values (for subjects who indeed did receive the SACA) should be set to zero in order to obtain accurate 12-month rates of service use.

Dataset Names

Raw Dataset Name: PyW, PyAC, PyAD
Scored Dataset Name: MHUySPc, MHBySPc, MHNySPc

Keywords

Mental Health Services, Inpatient, Outpatient, Special Education, In-School Services, Hospitalization, Residential Treatment Center, Group Home, Foster Care, Emergency Shelter, Counselor, Therapist, Physician, Health Insurance, Referrals, Incarceration, Juvenile Facility, Jail, Illegal Activities, Arrest, Police Contact.