Implementing SafeCare®

Entries in this row combine information across all versions of SafeCare. Only SafeCare Augmented meets HHS criteria for an evidence-based home visiting model. For SafeCare itself, there are no manuscripts about high- or moderate-quality impact studies. Some other versions of SafeCare have at least one such manuscripts. Planned Activities Training (a SafeCare module) and Cellular Phone Enhanced Planned Activities Training (a SafeCare module with an add-on) show evidence of effectiveness.

Implementation last updated: 2020

The information in this profile reflects feedback, if provided, from this model’s developer as of the above date. The description of the implementation of the model(s) here may differ from how the model(s) was implemented in the research reviewed to determine this model’s evidence of effectiveness. Inclusion in the implementation report does not mean the practices described meet the HHS criteria for evidence of effectiveness. Similarly, models described here may not all have impact studies, and those with impact studies may vary in their effectiveness. Please see the Effectiveness button on the left for more information about research on the effectiveness of the models discussed here.

Prerequisites for implementation

Type of implementing program

A variety of agencies have implemented SafeCare, including county and state public health departments, departments of family and children’s services, Head Start programs, intensive family preservation services, agencies working with parents with intellectual difficulties, criminal justice programs that serve parents recently released from jail, drug courts, and private agencies that receive referrals from state or local departments of family and children’s services.

There are no specific requirements governing the type or characteristics of agencies that can implement the model. However, there is a pre-implementation process to confirm both model fit and agency readiness (described under Requirements for Program Certification).

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Staffing requirements

SafeCare sites are required to have two primary staff positions: (1) SafeCare providers who deliver home-based services and (2) SafeCare coaches who monitor the fidelity of SafeCare implementation, conduct coaching for providers, and may also deliver services to families. Some local implementing agencies select staff to become certified SafeCare trainers. Certified SafeCare trainers can train providers and coaches within their agency or organizations that are conducting the work of their agency. NSTRC does not require implementing agencies to have SafeCare program coordinators or senior leadership staff.
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Staff education and experience

NSTRC does not have educational requirements for providers or coaches implementing SafeCare. NSTRC recommends that local implementing agencies train staff who have good communication and interpersonal skills and are comfortable delivering interventions to families in the home setting, responsive to coaching and constructive feedback, motivated to implement SafeCare with fidelity, open to new service models, and interested in using a structured protocol for service delivery. NSTRC can guide local implementing agencies in selecting appropriate candidates for each type of staff position. NSTRC requires that SafeCare providers, coaches, and trainers complete SafeCare trainings and receive certification (described under Pre-Service Staff Training).

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Supervision requirements

NSTRC does not have a required ratio of coaches to providers but recommends that local implementing agencies consider coaches’ other job responsibilities when assigning them to providers. Coaching involves rating model fidelity and providing feedback to the provider and may differ from staff supervision.

NSTRC requires that certified SafeCare coaches provide coaching to providers regularly and conduct monthly team meetings to discuss cases and SafeCare implementation. Coaches are required to regularly monitor the quality of SafeCare sessions either in person or through audio or video recordings (described under Pre-Service Staff Training).

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Staff ratio requirements

NSTRC recommends that each full-time provider hold a caseload of 12 to 16 families. NSTRC recommends that local implementing agencies determine their ratios on the basis of their local implementation model (for example, more families can be seen if they are seen less frequently).
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Data systems/technology requirements

NSTRC uses a web-based data collection portal, the SafeCare Portal, to enter and monitor data on training, fidelity, and certification progress among SafeCare providers, coaches, and trainers. In addition, providers can enter de-identified family data, including demographic information, results from assessments, and satisfaction ratings.

SafeCare staff can use reports accessible via the SafeCare Portal to track (1) family-level indicators such as program completion, behavior change, and satisfaction and (2) staff indicators such as fidelity and activity. SafeCare staff can use the data in these reports when applying for funding and reporting to funders.

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Implementation notes

The information contained on this page was last updated in June 2020. Recommended further reading lists the sources for this information. In addition, the information contained in this profile was reviewed for accuracy by the National SafeCare Training and Research Center on February 21, 2020. HomVEE reserves the right to edit the profile for clarity and consistency.

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