With a good assessment and skilled motivational work, the best intervention usually reveals itself to all involved. In addition to efficacy, motivation and potential side effects of various interventions must be considered.
In the progression of "ready, aim, fire," relationship, assessment and motivation collectively make up the "ready" stage. Focusing on the "aim" is the next step. Assessment results, formal and informal, provide the foundation, but putting all of the ingredients together can be a challenge. With a collaborative relationship and sufficient motivation, deciding what to target may involve some negotiation, but that is a logical and reasonable part of the process. While public safety must come first, even the most resistant clients’ goals and values should be reflected in the game plan to some extent.
The most important concept is that the assessment is not just a set of documents to check off and file away. Developing the plan is part art and part science.
Who and what to target is a matter of science. Consider below:
WHO to target – Prioritize higher risk clients for intense interventions but don't ignore lower risk clients. Low risk does not mean “no risk.”
WHAT to target –
Top Tier Targets: antisocial attitudes, associates, personality, and family/marital relationships
Second Tier Targets: substance abuse, employment, leisure/recreation
Focus: The goal is to decrease public safety risk. Focus on decreasing the behaviors that lead to crime.
Symptoms: Sometimes a symptom (e.g. substance abuse) must be addressed before a top priority target can be the focus.
Measure Behavior: Many offenders are expert at "doing time." Prescribed dosage must be based on measurement of specific effort or behavioral progress, not simply measurement of time.
How and when to target the various concerns involves science, relationship and creativity. Do you target the most important area first even if it is the area that creates the least motivation for the client? How do you prioritize the top needs since working on everything at once would be overwhelming and possibly counterproductive?
We've developed our software to help you assess, prioritize and plan your client’s intervention. Click on our software icons below to see how we've implemented the intervention principle in our software.
The next EBP principle is Plan.