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Providing community services for Adults, Children & Families and Seniors

Children and Families Services at Suncoast Center

Suncoast Center, Inc. provides a broad range of community based programs for children and families designed to develop and enhance family support resources, and to resolve emotional and behavioral problems arising from mental health, substance abuse, child abuse and neglect, trauma, and much more. These Programs are integrated across levels of care to insure provision of appropriated assessment and treatment resources, with youth and family development, and social support venues essential to addressing needed changes within the family. Services improve the behavior and functioning of its members, while creating positive social empowerment experiences that promote healthy, long term family ties with their neighborhoods and community.

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Assessment and Evaluation Services  (back to top)

Child Protection Team (CPT)
The Child Protection Team program is a medically directed, multidisciplinary program based on the idea that child abuse and neglect involve complex issues and require the expertise of many professionals in order to protect children. The Child Protection Team is an independent community based program that provides expertise in evaluating alleged maltreatments of child abuse and neglect, assessing risk factors, and providing recommendations for interventions to protect children and enhance families’ capacities to provide a safer environment when possible. The purpose of the Team is to assist Child Protective Investigations and law enforcement in their investigations of child abuse cases with the provision of diagnostic services, case consultation, and assessment services. Child Protection Team services supplement the child protective investigation activities of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office and other law enforcement agencies as well as the case planning activities of Community Based Care. Team involvement is typically initiated as a result of an open investigation of child abuse. CPT also takes referrals from the Guardian ad Litem, school, medical providers, and Community Based Care.

The Child Protection Team provides:
• Medical diagnosis and evaluation
• Child and Family Social Assessments
• Multidisciplinary Staffings
• Psychological and psychiatric evaluations
• Specialized and Forensic interviews
• Expert Court Testimony

Additionally, the Child Protection Team Staff provides training for child protection investigators and other community providers of child welfare services as well as for medical providers in the community.

Services are private and confidential and are provided without cost to the family. Children ages birth through seventeen who have been reported to the Florida Abuse Hotline and whose situation is currently under investigation are eligible for CPT services.

Case Management   (back to top)

Children's Targeted Case Management
Provides Case Management services to Medicaid eligible children under 18 (and their families) who reside in Pinellas County. Services are provided in-home and are community-based, including activities which assess, plan, monitor, advocate, link and coordinate the full array of community based resources and services needed by severely emotionally disturbed youth with a mental health diagnosis.  These children may also require two or more mental health services to maintain their current residence/placement. When appropriate, case managers are assigned to Suncoast Center treatment programs as core members of the treatment teams. Case Managers develop and maintain relationships with essential agency and community organizations which promote the positive interests of the children and their families.  Flexible staff hours are available to families.  The Program is funded entirely by Medicaid.

In-Home Community Based Programs   (back to top)

Family Counseling System of Care
The Family System of Care is a short-term, in-home rapid response program funded by the Central Florida Behavioral Health Network, Inc. (CFBHN). The Family Counseling System of Care program is designed to provide family-focused crisis response and risk management counseling, family case management and resource development services to children under the age of 18 years old who are experiencing stressors within their everyday life that may be affecting their social and family life. Families are eligible to receive in-home assessment, intensive family therapy, and case management service. In addition, per the family’s request, program clinicians provide consultation to classroom teachers addressing the different types of severe behaviors seen in the classroom and general strategies for intervention. Families served are provided with cell phone accessibility and on-call response available 24hours a day /7 days a week by master’s degree level staff.

Family Self-Directed Care
Provides individualized in-home and community based services. The services offered through this program include assessments, case management, outreach, in-home therapy, and information to community resources and referrals. The average length of stay will vary by family based on their needs ranging anywhere from 1 to 12 months. This methodology is based on having families involved with services at different levels, frequencies, and durations. Some families may need assessments, referrals and linkage to services that could resolve their presenting issues within a month, while other families will require more assistance. At the most intensive level of service, a family may receive in-home therapy services weekly for six months with follow-up services. The Family Self-Directed Care program is funded by Department of Children and Families (DCF) and Medicaid. Flexible day/evening hour appointments are available as well as cell phone accessibility to meet the families scheduling and communication needs.

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
The Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Program (TANF) provides flexible clinical in-home community-based services to TANF eligible families when their progress toward stable and positive family functioning and self-sufficiency is impeded by mental health/substance abuse barriers. In addition to TANF eligibility, families served reside in South Pinellas County and have a child under 18. Clinical staff provides in-home assessment; family centered counseling related to issues of self-sufficiency, community human service linkage, and access to Suncoast Center psychiatric and Children’s Targeted Case Management services. Eligible families are also encouraged to participate with Total Family Strategy family group activities. TANF staff members are Master’s level or licensed therapists, and work flexible hours to accommodate the families served. The Program is funded by the Department of Children and Families Alcohol Drug Abuse and Mental Health Program Office through CFBHN, and Medicaid.

Therapeutic Preschool Intervention Program
The Therapeutic Preschool Intervention Program provides specialized early childhood mental health assessments and treatment services to families with children 0-5 years of age located throughout Pinellas County. Mental health and family case management services address barriers to the child’s educational, social, and developmental success. Clinical services are in-home and family centered, with follow-up monitoring and intervention. Specialized early childhood assessment and treatment services are offered through parent and teacher consultation and coordination of behavior intervention activities. Flexible day/evening hours and cell phone accessibility meets family scheduling and communication needs. The Therapeutic Preschool Intervention Program is funded by the Juvenile Welfare Board, client fees and insurance, including Medicaid.

Intensive In-Home Intervention   (back to top)

Intensive Family Services
The Intensive Family Services program provides an urgent care, intensive response to families requiring a continuum of community based family therapy, intervention, case management, community engagement and family support services. On-site intervention services are provided to families with children ages 0-17 where there is a mental health issue which negatively impacts the family stability. Program services are provided within a solution focused and competency based perspective. The program provides in depth screening and assessments of individuals and families to determine care issues and treatment needs, provides family therapy, individual and couples therapy, specialized infant mental health services, family case management and family support services. Families served are provided with cell phone accessibility and on-call response available 24/7 by master’s degree level staff. IFS is funded by the Juvenile Welfare Board, client fees and insurance, including Medicaid.


Intensive Residential Services   (back to top)

Medical Foster Care (MFC)
The Medical Foster Care Program (MFC) is a home-based program for children that are medically involved and who are unable to live with their families. This program is a more affordable alternative for the citizens of Florida for the care of foster children who must live in hospitals, nursing homes, or who must have expensive nursing services in a regular foster home. The MFC Program allows a foster child with a chronic medical condition to grow and develop in a family setting in a state licensed foster home. MFC parents are trained and certified as Medicaid providers of personal care services for these children. One of this program's most important roles is to return the child to their birth family by training the family to care for their child's special medical needs.

Outpatient Programs   (back to top)

Children’s Outpatient (Medical and Non-Medical)
Provides mental health assessment, counseling, psychiatric evaluation and medication services to children under 18 and their families residing in Pinellas County. Services are office-based on Central Avenue in St. Petersburg and are provided by State licensed Master’s level therapists, psychiatrists, and ARNP staff. Regular office hours are 8-5 pm Mondays and Fridays, and Tuesday-Thursday 8-8:00 p.m. Clinical counseling services are short-term, family-centered, and solution focused. When indicated, outpatient psychotherapy is provided concurrently with medication management and Children’s Targeted Case Management. Medical Outpatient serves children in all Suncoast Center programs that require this treatment. COP is funded by the Juvenile Welfare Board, client fees and insurance, including Medicaid.

Children’s Substance Abuse Outpatient and Intervention Services
Provides screenings, assessments, individual and family counseling, educational groups and psychiatric services to children under 18 having a substance abuse problem. Services also include those having a family member with a substance abuse problem. Services are available to families living throughout Pinellas County and are provided in offices located on Central Avenue in St. Petersburg, as well as, limited services are provided, in a north county location. Outpatient and intervention services are provided by experienced master’s level or licensed therapists, psychiatrists, and ARNP staff. Evening office hours are available Tuesday-Thursday. Clinical services are family-centered and short-term. The Children’s Substance Abuse Outpatient and Intervention Programs are funded by CFBHN, Pinellas county purchasing- juvenile arbitration, fees and insurance (Medicaid).

Prevention and Early Intervention Programs    (back to top)

Family Education and Support Services
Provides home based services to parents, including: parent education, emotional support, home management skills, resources location, parent support groups and workshops. The program goal is to prevent child abuse and neglect. This program is composed of a core group of experienced family support workers, case coordinators, professional counselors, trained volunteers and parent support group leaders. The team encourages and teaches parents through role modeling and coaching to work together to enhance parenting skills and reduce parenting stress. The Parent Aide Program, Childnet Program and Shaken Baby Prevention Program are all included in Family Education and Support Services (FESS).

Total Family Strategy (TFS)
The Total Family Strategy Program provides in-home family-centered therapy and family social networking/support activities to families that are at risk for dependency upon public funded economic dependency, child welfare, mental health, substance abuse, systems. The TFS program is funded by the Juvenile Welfare Board. The TFS model was developed recognizing that families who are isolated from their family and community supports are more likely to become dependent upon economic and social service systems. Therefore, TFS services are three fold: 1) family and individual therapy including couples therapy and parenting, mental health, domestic violence, substance abuse prevention, child behavioral/ child developmental, and solution focused family systems therapy; 2) family social network activities and social support building activities; and 3) family case management to assist with immediate and crisis driven family needs. The program also provides risk assessments and safety planning, and on-call crisis intervention services available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Eligible families must commit to fully participate in the TFS program including a minimum of weekly in home therapy, and monthly family event participation, followed by six monthly follow-up sessions. Total Family Strategy partners with the Emergency Response Team multi-agency collaborative to serve needs of families whose children have been diverted from out-of-home foster care by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Child Protective Investigations Unit. The Total Family Strategy program is also provided in partnership with Coordinated Child Care. Families who are in need of child care in order to accomplish their targeted goals may receive LIEF entitled childcare subsidy assigned to the TFS program.

Click here to view the current TFS monthly newsletter - August 2011

Click here to view the July 2011 newsletter

Click here to view the June 2011 newsletter

Trauma Assessment and Intervention Services   (back to top)

Child Abuse Recovery Services (CARS)
Voluntary program for families of children who have been sexually abused by a non-caretaker adult or another child. The CARS program offers crisis intervention, supportive therapy, and case management services for the child, the parent, and/or the siblings.

CARS Services:
• Medical examinations by pediatricians and by pediatric nurse practitioners.
• Short-term immediate crisis counseling services to help deal with the abuse of the child.
• Help in accessing financial assistance for losses incurred due to the abuse of the child.
• Assessments of the child's needs and the family's needs as a result of the crime and referrals to community agencies that can help the family to meet these needs.
• Therapy for the child, family, or parent, if other alternatives do not exist in the community.
• Criminal justice support.
• Parent support groups to help parents meet and share with other parents who are coping with the abuse of their children.
• Child self-esteem groups to help children and their siblings develop an improved feeling of self worth.

Safe Start Partnership
Safe Start Partnership is a partnership of agencies and citizens working together to prevent and reduce the impact of violence on children between birth and six years old. Help A Child provides direct services to children impacted by violence to reduce the negative effects of exposure to violence and strengthen families.

Services provided by the Safe Start Partnership Center:
• Case Management
• Information and Consultation
• Crisis Counseling and Family Stabilization
• Clinical Assessment
• Referrals to Community Resources
• Training
• Therapeutic Intervention

Sexual Assault Victim Examination (SAVE)
The SAVE Program provides forensic medical exams and follow up medical treatment (AFTER Clinic) for adult and adolescent victims of sexual assault.

Click Here to Print or Download Children Services Information

For more information on any of our programs please call 727-327-7656

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