Dr. Steven Berkowitz and colleagues at the Yale Child Study Center developed the Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention (CFTSI).   CFTSI is an intervention delivered early after a traumatic event, which has been shown to reduce Chronic Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) (full or partial) by 72% in a randomized clinical trial. Youth in the study were ages 7-17 and had an average of 6 previous traumatic exposures. The 4-6 session parent-child intervention demonstrated a reduction in the development of PTSD in this group by more than two times. This is the first acute and early intervention for children and adolescents that have shown to prevent the onset of PTSD.

For youth who have had PTSD or traumatic symptoms for a longer time, the Center also offers Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.  TFCBT has been shown to be the most effective treatment for youth with PTSD.  In addition, the Center also offers therapeutic Yoga for children and teens who would benefit more from non-talk therapies.

The Center staff have significant experience working with a range of child serving organizations and providers to increase the provision of trauma informed and developmentally appropriate conceptualizations and services to children, youth and their families. These organizations include Police Departments, Child Welfare/Protective Service Agencies, Pediatric Primary Care, Pediatric Emergency Departments, Child Forensic programs (Child Advocacy Centers) as well as mental health agencies.

The Center works closely with the Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health Services and Intellectual Disabilities Services in its efforts to develop a Trauma-Informed and Recovery oriented system.

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