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Table 2 Summary of assessment tools selected for the study

From: A minimum evaluation protocol and stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial of ACCESS Open Minds, a large Canadian youth mental health services transformation project

Instrument Informant(s) Key construct Subscales Measurement time(s)a
Description of participant sample
Customized ACCESS OM sociodemographic questionnaire Youth; Clinician; Administrative records Sociodemographic characteristics None Intake, Months 3, 6, 9, 12 and 34/end of services
Custom checklist Youth, Clinician Presenting concerns None Intake
GAIN-SSx Clinician-administered youth report Clinical symptoms Internalising problems, externalizing problems, substance use disorders, crime/violence Intake, Months 3, 12 and 24/end of services
Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS): Screenerx Clinician Suicidal ideation and behavior over past month plus one item re past suicidal behavior None Intake, Months 1, 3, 6, 9, 12 and 24/end of services
Service-level improvements
Customized services forms Clinician; Administrative records Number of referrals (Hyp. 1); Number offered evaluation 72 h after referral request (Hyp 2); Number offered appropriate treatment within 30 days after completion of initial evaluation (Hyp. 3) None Intake, Month 1; Services forms repeated at months 1, 3, 6, 9, 12, and 24 or at end of services to document services needed and offered
CCHS-MH 2012 questions related to services sought and received Clinician-interview with youth and/or family/carer, plus any available records Number of help-seeking contacts made for problems with mental health/substance use and whether or not services were received in previous 12 months (Hyp. 4) None; can examine type of contacts (formal, informal, etc.) Intake
Clinical improvements
Kessler-10 Psychological Distress Scale (K-10) Youth Unidimensional factor of distress as being linked to mental ill-health and varied diagnoses (Hyp. 5) Cut-offs based on overall score (e.g., mild distress) Intake, Months 1, 3, 6, 9, and 12
Clinical Global Impression of Severity (CGI)x Clinician Clinician’s rating of severity of youth’s presenting problem over time (Hyp. 5) None Intake, Months 1, 3, 6, 9, 12 and 24/end of services
Self-rated health and self-rated mental health (SRH-MH) Youth Self-assessment of health and mental health, each on a single 5-item Likert scale (Hyp. 5) None Intake, Months 1, 3, 6, 9, and 12
Functional improvements
Social and Occupational Functioning Assessment Scale (SOFAS)x Clinician Social and vocational functioning on a 0 to 100 scale (Hyp. 5) None Intake, Months 1, 3, 6, 9, 12 and 24/end of services
Subjective/Well-being improvements
Goals tool inspired by the Goals-based Outcome (GBO) tool*x Youth Self-rated progress on 3 chosen goals (Hyp. 5) None Intake, Months 3, 6, 12 and 24/end of services
Outcome Rating Scale (ORS)x Youth Overall outcome/ functioning/ well-being (Hyp. 5) None; Items related to overall; individual; interpersonal; and social outcomes can be examined separately Intake, Months 6, 12 and 24/end of services
World Health Organisation Quality of Life – Brief (WHOQOL)* Youth Self-assessment of quality of life (Hyp.5) Four domains: physical health, psychological health, social relationships, and environment Intake, Months 6, 12 and 24/end of services
Service experiences
OPOCx Youth, family Satisfaction (Hyp. 6) Access to service, services provided, participation/ rights, therapists/support workers/staff, environment, discharge, recovery outcome, service quality Months 1, 3, 6, 9, 12 and 24/end of services
Session Rating Scale (SRS)x Youth Working Alliance (Hyp. 6) None; Items related to relationship; goals or topic; approach or method; and overall can be examined separately Intake, Months 6, 12 and 24/end of services
Youth Efficacy/Empowerment Scale (YES)* Youth Empowerment Self, services, system Intake, Months 3, 6, 9, 12 and 24/end of services
  1. Hyp. = Hypothesis; OPOC = Ontario Perception of Care tool; GAIN-SS = Global Appraisal of Individual Needs –Short Screener
  2. *Completed at select sites and not all ACCESS Open Minds sites
  3. aAs youth presenting with different concerns may need varying lengths of follow-up, the assessment protocol is accordingly applied. For example, if the young person receives a follow-up at an ACCESS Open Minds site for 6 months, the SOFAS will be administered at Intake, Month 1, Month 3 and Month 6. However, if they receive follow-up for just 1 month, the SOFAS will only be administered at Intake and Month 1
  4. XIrrespective of length of follow-up, the following measures are to be administered at the end of follow-up: Demographic Information; SRS; YES; OPOC; WHOQOL; Services Form; SOFAS; CGI; C-SSRS; GAIN-SS; GBO-inspired tool