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Gender Differences in Patterns of Child Risk Across Programmatic Phases of the CMHI

A Multiple Group Latent Class Analysis (LCA)

Categorized Under: Health, Research + Evaluation



Data from 18,437 children enrolled in the national evaluation of the Children’s Mental Health Initiative (CMHI) between 1994 and 2005 were used to examine the evolution of patterns of risk among boys and girls across funding phases using multigroup latent class analysis. Consistent with previous research, this study identified four subgroups of children with similar patterns of child risk. Membership to these risk subgroups varied as a function of age and was associated with differences in impairment levels.

Changes in the distribution of boys and girls in the risk classes suggest that, over time, an increasing proportion of boys have entered the system of care program with complex histories of risk. Information on children’s exposure to child risk factors can aid policy makers, service providers, and clinicians in identifying children who may need more intensive services and tailoring services to their needs.

Authored By

  • Christine Greene-Walrath

    Vice PresidentICF International

    Christine Greene-Walrath has more than 17 years of experience in behavioral health research and evaluation, including the design, implementation, and analysis of multilevel, multimethod, multisite approaches to process and impact assessment. Dr. Walrath has applied her training and experience to several large-scale suicide prevention evaluations funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). She also provides senior management and oversight to multisite evaluations of the Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Their Families Program (CMHI) and the National Child Traumatic Stress Initiative (NCTSI).

    Dr. Walrath has provided leadership to the Garrett Lee Smith (GLS) Youth Suicide Prevention and Early Intervention Evaluation since its inception. Her contributions and responsibilities include fiscal, staff, and subcontractor management; design and instrumentation development; data use, sharing, and related regulatory agreements; analysis and dissemination; participation in program partner meeting and decision making; and  provision of technical assistance to grantees. She also provides contractual oversight to the suicide prevention hotline evaluation and provides leadership to the Native Aspirations Project Evaluation.

  • Robert Stephens

    Technical DirectorICF International

    Robert Stephens has more than 20 years of experience as a research psychologist consulting on experimental design, developing measures, and performing statistical analysis on a variety of research and evaluation projects in a number of different content areas, with a particular emphasis on longitudinal data analysis. Dr. Stephens has considerable experience in modeling behavioral data from longitudinal studies using multiple regression, logistic regression, multilevel modeling (e.g., hierarchical linear modeling), and latent variable modeling techniques, including structural equation modeling, latent class analysis, growth curve modeling, and growth mixture modeling. He also provides consultation on instrument development and psychometrics.

Insight Details

Published: Jun 7, 2010
Authors: , , Lucas Godoy Garraza, M.A. - ICF International; Melissa Azur, Ph.D. - Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health
Source: The Journal of Behavioral Health Services and Research

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