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Evidence Use in Mental Health Policy Making for Children in Foster Care

Hyde J, Mackie TI, Palinkas LA, Niemi E, Leslie LK
Administration and Policy in Mental Health
Pub Med #: 

Considerable attention is being given to the use of research evidence to inform public policy making. Building upon Weiss's model of research utilization, we examined the types and uses of evidence that child welfare administrators used in response to federal policy reforms requiring psychotropic medications oversight for children in foster care. Participants relied on a range of "global" and "local" evidence types throughout the policy development phase. Global research evidence was used to raise awareness about problems associated with psychotropic medication use. Local evidence helped to contextualize concerns and had problem-solving and political uses. In most states, policy actions were informed by a combination of evidence types.

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