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NCJ Number: 50599 Find in a Library
Title: IDEAL AND THE REAL - PRACTICAL APPROACHES AND TECHNIQUES IN EVALUATION (FROM PROGRAM EVALUATION - ALCOHOL, DRUG, ABUSE, AND MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES, 1975, BY JACK ZUSMAN ET AL - SEE NCJ-50594
Author(s): W G SMITH
Corporate Author: D C Heath and Co
United States of America
Date Published: 1975
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: D C Heath and Co
Lexington, MA 02173
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A REGIONAL CENTER UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ACTIVITIES OF ITS EVALUATION SECTION (MEASUREMENTS OF EFFECTIVENESS AND PRODUCTIVITY, OUTCOME, QUALITY, AND PREVENTION) ARE EXAMINED.
Abstract: THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH WAS REORGANIZED INTO SEVEN GEOGRAPHIC REGIONS IN THE EARLY 1960'S. EACH DECENTRALIZED REGION WAS PLACED UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF A REGIONAL CENTER WITH RESPONSIBILITY FOR ORGANIZING THE DELIVERING OF PUBLIC MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES TO THE AREA'S POPULATION. THE H. DOUGLAS SINGER ZONE CENTER WAS OPENED IN 1966, WITH A PERMANENT EVALUATION SECTION TO MONITOR REGIONAL PROGRAMS. THE EVALUATION SECTION HAS A THREEFOLD PURPOSE: TO PROVIDE SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION ABOUT SUCCESSES AND FAILURES OF A LARGE COMMUNITY MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAM, TO PROVIDE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATORS WITH DATA NECESSARY FOR PLANNING AND THE ALLOCATION OF AVAILABLE RESOURCES, AND TO PROVIDE FOR CONTINUOUS MONITORING THAT CAN ASSIST REGIONAL STAFF IN ASSESSING THEIR PROGRESS TOWARD SPECIFIED GOALS. SINCE THE CENTER'S INITIATION, THE EVALUATION SECTION HAS EXPERIENCED A NUMBER OF PROBLEMS. THERE HAS BEEN DIFFICULTY IN MAINTAINING SUPPORT FOR EVALUATIVE RESEARCH, AND DIFFICULTY HAS BEEN ENCOUNTERED ALSO IN OBTAINING AND MAINTAINING COOPERATION FROM CLINICAL STAFF. THERE HAVE BEEN MANY TECHNICAL RESEARCH DESIGN PROBLEMS. IT HAS TAKEN CONSIDERABLE EFFORT TO INSURE THAT STUDY FINDINGS ACTUALLY MAKE AN IMPACT ON CLINICAL PROGRAMS. TO MEASURE EFFECTIVENESS AND PRODUCTIVITY, A COMMUNITY MONITORING SYSTEM HAS BEEN CREATED THAT IS COMPRISED OF FOUR VARIABLES. THE FIRST TWO VARIABLES (RATIO OF CRISIS TO INTERMEDIATE STAY ADMISSIONS AND RATIO OF THE PROPORTION OF ADMISSIONS FROM AN AREA RELATIVE TO THAT AREA'S GENERAL POPULATION) DEAL WITH THE EFFECTIVENESS OF FRONTLINE PROGRAMS IN SCREENING PATIENTS AND IN UTILIZING ALTERNATIVES TO HOSPITALIZATION. THE OTHER TWO VARIABLES (PERCENTAGE OF PATIENTS HOSPIALIZED MORE THAN 2 MONTHS WITHIN A YEAR AT THE CENTER AND ANNUAL PER CAPITA DAYS HOSPITALIZED FOR MENTAL ILLNESS) FOCUS UPON THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE AFTERCARE NETWORK. THE COMMUNITY MENTAL HEALTH APPROACH OF THE CENTER AIMS TO REDUCE DISABILITY ASSOCIATED WITH MENTAL ILLNESS THROUGH EARLY CRISIS INTERVENTION, AND OUTCOME STUDIES ARE IN PROGRESS AND PLANNED TO ASCERTAIN THE IMPACT OF SUCH INTERVENTION. IN PREVENTIVE PROGRAMS, THERE IS A MARKED EMPHASIS ON DATA IN THE DECISIONMAKING PROCESS. LESSONS LEARNED FROM THE EXPERIENCES OF THE CENTER ARE DELINEATED. NOTES ARE INCLUDED. (DEP)
Index Term(s): Evaluation; Evaluative research; Illinois; Mental health; Program evaluation
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50599

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