SACA – Brief

Services Assessment for Children and Adolescents (SACA-C). This computerized interview is a revised version of the Service Assessment for Children and Adolescents (SACA; Stiffman et al., 2000). This measure was developed by the team of researchers in the UNOCCAP Project for NIMH. It assesses the frequency, duration, type, and cost of mental health and social services associated with the child's behavior, substance abuse, and delinquency. It has been adapted to also include school-based and court services.

Abstract: In year 8, a very brief questionnaire consisting of 27 items culled from the original instrument was given in place of the original SACA. The SACA-Brief collects parents' reports of their children's use of mental health services. The measure includes 4 "gate-level" questions about services for emotional, behavioral, drug or alcohol problems in the previous 12 months (not over the child‟s lifetime) including inpatient facilities, outpatient services, school services, and police contact. Follow-up questions ask about whether these services included specific types of facilities and about the frequency, age at first use and length of use across all types of facilities/services. These questions are not asked individually for each specific type of facility/provider. No scales were derived for this instrument. The SACA-Brief data provides broad and useful information on whether the child used any mental health services or had any contact with police in the last 12 months. Analysts should examine how many participants positively endorsed receiving services before generating descriptive statistics or using outcomes in statistical models. In general, most items will have a high frequency of participants who report not receiving any services (i.e., zeros), so examination of individual response distributions is highly advised.

Who Completed this Measure?: Parent

Cohort 1 - Administrative History

  • Year 08 | grade 7 | age 13

Technical Reports:

Raw Dataset Name: PxAC

Scored Dataset Name: MHBy

Arrest, Foster Care, Hospitalization, Illegal Activities, In-School Services, Incarceration, Inpatient, Jail, Mental Health Services, Outpatient, Special Education

Is this Measure Available for Public Use?: No

Obtain Measure:

Arlene R. Stiffman, Ph.D.
Barbara A. Bailey Professor of Social Work
Washington University
Phone: (314) 935-6685