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Parent-Child Assistance Program (PCAP)

In Brief

Last Updated

April 2016


Evidence of Model Effectiveness

This model does not meet the criteria established by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for an “evidence-based early childhood home visiting service delivery model” for the general population or for tribal populations.


Model Description

The Parent-Child Assistance Program (PCAP) targets women who report heavy alcohol or drug abuse during pregnancy and is designed to prevent births of alcohol- and drug-exposed children. To achieve this goal, PCAP aims to help clients complete substance abuse treatment, maintain abstinence from substances, engage in family planning, enhance the health and well-being of their children, connect with community services, and increase their economic stability. PCAP is a social work-based case management-focused home visiting program that provides services for up to three years with at least two home visits per month. During home visits, case managers assess and monitor a family’s needs and well-being; connect the family with community services to address those needs; monitor service receipt; facilitate communication among the client, family members, and community service providers; and address service barriers. The case managers also teach, role model, and guide the development of clients’ interpersonal, parenting, household management, and community living skills; and provide practical assistance such as transportation to appointments. For more information, please read the Model Overview.


Extent of Evidence

Results of Research and ReviewNumber of Studies for Parent-Child Assistance Program (P-CAP)
Released from 1979 to 2015 20
Eligible for review 2
     Rated high 0
     Rated moderate 0
     Rated low 2
     Additional sources1 0

1Additional sources overlap with another study and are not rated.

For more information, see the study database. For more information on the criteria used to determine the study ratings, please read Producing Study Ratings.


Summary of Findings

Home Visiting Evidence of Effectiveness (HomVEE) reports results from studies that meet the standards for high or moderate ratings. No such studies were identified for this review of PCAP.


Criteria Established by the Department of Health and Human Services

Information Based on Comprehensive Review of All High- and Moderate-Impact Studies for this Model
High- or moderate-quality impact study? No
Across high- or moderate-quality studies, favorable impacts in…
   at least two outcome domains within one sample
   the same domain for at least two non-overlapping samples?
Favorable impacts on full sample? NA
Any favorable impacts on outcome measures sustained at least 12 months after model enrollment?1 NA
One or more favorable, statistically significant impact reported in a peer-reviewed journal?1 NA

NA = not applicable.

1This information is reported for all models, but the requirements for sustained findings and inclusion in a peer-reviewed journal only apply to models for which all findings are from randomized controlled trials.

Please read the HHS Criteria for Evidence-Based Models for more information.