Approaches to the Assessment of Children in the Context of Disasters

Betty S. Lai, Eva Alisic, Rayleen Lewis, Kevin R. Ronan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Children exposed to disasters are a vulnerable population, making the assessment of children post-disaster an important issue. Utilizing a Multiple Gating Stepped Care framework, we highlight recent literature related to post-disaster assessment and intervention for children. In particular, we focus on screening, clinical evaluation, and feedback-informed service delivery. Screening allows large populations of children to be assessed at a relatively low cost. Children identified by screening as being at risk may then be assessed through more in-depth clinical evaluations, in order to assess clinical symptoms, strengths, and stressors, and to make determinations about appropriate interventions. Continued assessment during therapy provides important feedback for the delivery of appropriate care. New formats for assessment, as well as issues related to identifying sources for assessment, are discussed. Recommendations for future directions are provided.

Original languageEnglish
Article number45
JournalCurrent psychiatry reports
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2016


  • Assessment
  • Children
  • Disasters
  • Posttraumatic stress

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