Constructing a Joint Clinical Case Formulation and Treatment Plan with Families



In this chapter, the authors describe a clinical case formulation, identify approaches to case formulations, including cultural considerations and a Five P’s approach, and finally describe applications therein when evaluating preschool age children. In particular, this chapter highlights the importance of constructing a joint case formulation and techniques which can be utilized, such as the “soft start up,” to invite the caregivers into the process of creating a joint understanding of the nature of child’s difficulties. Caregiver resistance, defensiveness, grief and/or denial as well as provider countertransference are identified as crucial elements to achieving consensus and caregiver “buy-in.” Approaches to creating a joint treatment plan with the child’s caregivers are discussed, including a SMART goals approach, and a comprehensive list of current, evidence-based interventions is reviewed. Finally, a case example is presented and formulated to demonstrate the key concepts discussed in the chapter.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Department of Counseling PsychologyUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Infant and Toddler Mental Health Program, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesChildren’s National Medical CenterWashington, DCUSA
  3. 3.JAW Solutions, LLCAtlantaUSA
  4. 4.Department of Psychiatry, Irving Harris Program in Child Development and Infant Mental HealthUniversity of Colorado School of MedicineAuroraUSA

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