Comprehensive Health Assessment for Teens (CHAT®) a Scientifically Validated Tool with Strong Psychometrics

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Substance Use & Misuse Journal Published Study Results in “CHAT: Development and Validation of a Computer-Delivered, Self-Report, Substance Use Assessment for Adolescents”

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Inflexxion, Inc. announces the publication of its study, “CHAT: Development and Validation of a Computer-Delivered, Self-Report, Substance Use Assessment for Adolescents.” The results of this study indicate that CHAT is psychometrically sound.

CHAT follows a developmental approach that emphasizes the varying needs of young people, uses engaging multimedia to facilitate adolescents' self-administration, and assesses strengths as well as problem areas, providing a more comprehensive portrait for guiding treatment. “Use of a computer-delivered format aligns well with adolescent culture and their familiarity with computers as sources of information and entertainment. The self-directed nature of CHAT meets the adolescent’s developmental need for autonomy,” says Kimberlee Trudeau, Ph.D., Research Scientist.

CHAT was developed with input from adolescents and adolescent addiction experts. It generates scores in six different domains, which enables providers to review adolescents’ severity in alcohol use, drug use, tobacco use, psychological health, family relationships and peer relationships. When a CHAT assessment is administered a second time, scores can be compared with the first administration to determine outcome or progress in all six domains.

“Reliability and validity of CHAT’s six problem dimensions were evaluated in two studies we conducted from 2003 to 2008,” says Albert Villapiano, Ed.D., Vice President of Clinical Development at Inflexxion. “Study 1 included 192 adolescents and involved instrument development and initial test–retest reliability and construct validation. Study 2 included 356 adolescents and involved development of the multimedia format of the instrument and final test–retest reliability and construct validation.”

Results from the study published in Substance Use & Misuse indicate CHAT has reliability and validity for these six targeted problem severity dimensions. In addition to these scores, CHAT collects clinical data about other important domains: physical health, romantic relationships, school issues, work issues, legal issues, and recreational activities, as well as ratings about adolescents’ concern and motivation about each problem area.

This tool can be used to guide treatment planning for adolescents who are in treatment or in the juvenile justice system. CHAT is unique and successful because it is not labor-intensive to administer nor does it require clinical training to administer like many other assessment programs. CHAT allows for real-time data capturing and provision of reports for clinicians and administrators, while reducing the resources needed for the assessment process (e.g., clinician time). Such a technology-based infrastructure supports the current emphasis on continuity of care across service systems to improve client outcomes as well as build efficiencies to reduce health care costs.

This study was published in the journal Substance Use & Misuse, April 2011, Volume 46, Number 6. For reprints, please contact chatinfo(at)inflexxion(dot)com.

About Inflexxion
Inflexxion, Inc., a leader in creating scientifically validated solutions for critical areas of health care and developer of the Comprehensive Health Assessment for Teens (CHAT), was founded in 1989. Inflexxion leverages technology to improve public health. We create clinically validated tools and programs for critical areas of health care, including prevention and wellness education, addiction and pain treatment, and pharmaceutical risk management. Key offerings include: NAVIPPRO, PainEDU.org, painACTION.com, SOAPP, and COMM. These innovative solutions help reduce health-related risks, enhance clinical outcomes, and positively impact the quality of care.

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Elsbeth McSorley
Inflexxion, Inc.
(617) 332-6028 269
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