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Program & Services

Outcome Evaluation

Positive changes are happening at Amberwing

Partial hospitalization programming has been available through Essentia Health for many years. Partial hospitalization is typically offered to youth who have mental health needs that require more intense intervention than outpatient therapy can provide, but are not in imminent danger to themselves or others.

In September 2012, thanks to the generosity of the Miller Dwan Foundation, Essentia Health and the community at large, Amberwing opened its doors, allowing for these partial hospitalization programs to expand and provide treatment for a greater number of youth in a warm and therapeutic setting. Our commitment to our families and their children is to provide the best possible evidence-based, family-focused care.

To honor this commitment, an empirical study was conducted in partnership with Kathy Dowell, Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Minnesota, Duluth. Measurement tools included the CAFAS, which is the Child and Adolescent Functional Assessment Scale supported by over 20 years of research regarding its validity in detecting changes in behaviors, and the JIFF, which is the Juvenile Inventory for Functioning, allowing parental input on identifying behaviors that need attention and also measuring changes in those behaviors over the course of treatment.

As Amberwing has received informal feedback from youth and families alike that our treatment works, and it works well, it was not a surprise that the data supports these stories of success! Below are three of the graphs formulated from the data gathered in the outcome evaluation.

Below: This graph shows the initial problematic behaviors that were identified upon admission to a partial hospitalization program and the measure of improvement in all of these areas upon discharge from the program.
CAFAS Outcomes

Below: This graph identifies what families feel are the strengths of the partial hospitalization programs. It is clear that both the program and the dedicated staff are a vital part of creating change in the youth and families we serve.
What do you consider the strenghts of the Amberwing program? Series 1 Facility=7, Communication=11, Staff=33, Treatment program=44

Below: At Amberwing, we value each and every person we are able to serve. This graph shows that the majority of those we do serve rate their satisfaction as excellent!
Caregiver Statisfaction survey results

We are thrilled that the data supports our firm belief that youth and families are receiving excellent care and are making positive changes. However, we are not willing to remain satisfied with the treatment we provide, but are constantly striving to make improvements.
To this end, we are beginning a Patient and Family Advisory Council to allow for consumer input into our treatment. We also continue to expand our services, including the recent addition of a second Family and Friends DBT Skills Education Group to better meet the needs of our parents and other community members.

Above all, we believe in hope and transformation - by doing everything possible to foster that possibility in each of us.
Above all, we believe in hope and transformation — by doing everything possible to foster that possibility in each of us.
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