Treatment foster care services: a research agenda for child welfare

Child Welfare. Sep-Oct 1994;73(5):565-81.


Treatment foster care is a recent and rapidly expanding multisystem service. This article summarizes the empirical literature on treatment foster care and offers suggestions for future research directions. Results from program evaluations and experimental research suggest that treatment foster care is an effective alternative to residential treatment for seriously troubled and troubling children. The research has lacked rigorous controls regarding the populations served, however, as well as the critical components of interventions used in treatment foster care that produce positive results for the children. Integration with pertinent research findings from other disciplines is also necessary because of the multisystemic needs of the diverse population of children served in treatment foster care.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Caregivers / psychology
  • Child
  • Child Behavior Disorders / therapy
  • Data Collection / standards
  • Foster Home Care / standards*
  • Health Services Research / standards
  • Humans
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care / standards
  • Residential Treatment / methods*
  • Residential Treatment / standards