Multisystemic therapy for child abuse and neglect (MST-CAN): description of the treatment, psychiatric morbidity, and the psychiatrist’s role
background Many untreated psychiatric problems occur in families where there is child abuse. It is very important to find ways of ensuring that the hard-to-reach families receive adequate psychiatric assessment and appropriate treatment.
aim To describe the treatment method and first results of multisystemic therapy for child abuse and neglect (mst-can).
method We report the psychiatric problems of the first 18 families that were treated and we report the follow-up during the first 18 months. In addition, the mst-can treatment and the psychiatrist’s role are illustrated by taking two cases as an example.
results Most of the families agreed to a psychiatric assessment and subsequent treatment. In most families safety improved considerably and out-of-house placements were avoided.
conclusion The first results suggest that mst-can is a promising treatment for families where there is child abuse. Essential elements of mst-can are targeted psychiatric diagnostic assessment and subsequent treatment.