Psychological screening is an orderly process for acquiring different model of conducts that are important in cognition, and are used for achieving and evaluation of those models in relation to standards. The importance of testing is administering, attaining, and interpreting the results. Addressing is important in the objectivity of the screening procedure. Ideally, instance, place, and situation are mainly the factors that influence the screening results. Nevertheless, the importance of regularity in the screening process is to come up with uniformity from the variables used in the procedure. As a result, each individual per taking the screening process should do it in the same way. The center of attention of this paper is to discuss the screening procedure for substance use in children and adolescents and for those of them who come from families where abuse of the substance occurs.
Screening protocols are used for identifying
- Substance use disorders in children and adolescents
- Children who may be living in a home where substance abuse occurs.
The reason for the test is to spot out adolescents in need of assessment from disorders of substance use and those who live in a substance abuse setting. Screening does this by exposing signs of problems amongst adolescents in relation to substance use. Testing takes a greater part in the life and history of the client pertaining drug usage without undergoing diagnostic procedure (Franklin, 2013). Screening protocols are as follows:
- Selection of screening instruments
- Who conducts the screening
- Selection of who to be screened
- Selection of Components of the screening procedure
Selection of Screening Instruments
During the selection of testing tools, there are determining factors to be considered. The first factor is how suitable and consistent is the tool is. Second is how fitting the tool is in the adolescent population. Third is the environment of the making/development of the tool and finally but not the least is the proposed use of the tool/instrument (Urbina, 2004). In relation to the problem in question which is identifying effects that come along with children use of substance as well as adolescents and children who may be living in a home where substance abuse occurs, it is recommended that screening should cover numerous areas involving the individual and his surroundings.
Who Conducts the Screening
In order for expertise to administer the screening, it should be a straightforward and an easy kind of a procedure. An easy screening process would help to cover several numbers of skilled specialists willing to help the affected population. Screening is conducted by professionals or specialists such as institution counselors, street youth personnel, pediatricians and the probation officers. In addition, society association and the personnel involved in “adolescent at risk” must be in a position to screen and identify substance use and the environment of the juvenile affected.
Selection of Whom to be Screened
First and foremost, all the juveniles who are under arrest or detained should pass through a screening procedure together with inclusive of the ‘status offenders’. Those adolescents who form the group of inhabitants at risk should also be exposed for screening process to assess the level of substance abuse. Home based drugs abuse addicts and adolescents who are facing the substance use effects should be screened so that they are helped to live a positive life. Finally, teens starting the young people wellbeing system, students in special learning and those who dropped out of school should not be left out in the screening process.
Selection of Components of the Screening Procedure
Components of primary screening procedure are three in number; domains, screening technique and information sources (American Counseling Association, 2005) information sources are used where the screening specialist is experienced and has handled many cases of drugs and substance abuse. Domain is a technique where the affected client is first judged according to the environment he lives in and other sidelined illness observed from a client before screening begins. Ideally, techniques used are the most important factors in the screening protocol since they determine the feedback of clients and final result. There are two types of screening techniques, which are;
1. Interviews and questionnaires
Interview is used to gather information from individuals and their guardians and assist in giving the screening officer a chance to scrutinize the client’s non-oral behaviors and measure the oral ability. When ordered interviews are used as per request of or in line with administration structure that is given in the interview, a brochure is relevant. A screening specialist or officer using ordered interviews must be well conversant and understand the administration structure of the screening organization. There is also a random interview, where a client is asked random questions in the screening practice.
2. Drug monitoring
It takes place mainly in the laboratories. It is a way of supplementing the data collected through screening instruments and provided resource. Monitoring must be carried out at appropriate situation or position during the time of screening and in a way favorable with permitted measures. It should be performed in approval of the adolescent. However, there are limitations related to drug monitoring that are minimal information, brutality and outcomes cannot be attained by testing urine and blood.
The screening procedure should preferably take the shortest time possible of about half an hour to avoid boredom and loss of focus. The instrument used should not be complex in that a large number of specialists can administer it, and the focal point should be on the prototype of substance consumption on the adolescents. The content of the test should be able to cover different clients and from different settings and culture. Interviews should be conducted in a good manner so as to get rid of the errors that occur in the field. Adolescents should be interviewed in the absence of their parents/guardians or elders. In questionnaires where pen and paper is involved, the client should read the instructions on his own loudly to the person screening him. Reading loudly ensures or guarantees that the client is attentive and understands of what is expected of him/her. Reading in a loud voice helps to pre-judge whether client is suitable for the screening position from his capability of understanding the content in the interviewing document. All these screening procedures create a good demonstration during the assessment process.