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Check out Orbis' blog to see articles and content with a focus on criminal and juvenile justice, child welfare, evidence-based interventions, and other matters affecting our communities. 

Evidence-Based Case Management for Justice-Involved Clients

Posted by Orbis Partners on Sep 28, 2023 8:30:00 AM

When it comes to the complex criminal justice system, the threads of change often weave through innovative approaches that offer hope, empowerment, and transformation. Evidence-based case management provides a pathway for justice-involved clients seeking a fresh start. It's where research and real-world application intersect to mitigate recidivism and foster prosocial behaviors, mental well-being, and comprehensive support.

Among the leaders of this critical work stands Orbis Partners, a trusted name renowned for its commitment to catalyzing positive outcomes. Together, we can illuminate the path to successful reintegration and integration, celebrating the potential for change and reshaping lives for the better.

Understanding Evidence-Based Case Management  

Case management involves a collaborative process that assesses, plans, implements, coordinates, monitors, and evaluates services to meet client needs. But what does it mean to be “evidence-based?”

The National Association of Social Workers defines evidence-based practice as "a process in which the practitioner combines well-researched interventions with clinical experience, ethics, client preferences, and culture to guide and inform the delivery of treatments and services."

Evidence-based case management ensures that the collaborative process stems from informed decision-making, leading to improved outcomes.

Case Management Guiding Principles

Case management aims to improve clients' health and well-being by advocating for their needs and coordinating care effectively. The practice is guided by ethical principles such as:

  • Autonomy: Pertains to promoting individual independence by facilitating informed decision-making aligned with personal values while also considering societal context and potential impacts on others' rights and safety, with exceptions for those unable to make competent choices.
  • Beneficence and Justice: The counselor's duty to enhance the client's well-being involves actions that promote good, prevent harm, and treat a client's support system fairly without bias.
  • Nonmaleficence: Embodies the obligation to avoid causing harm to others, often summarized as "do no harm," and is considered a pivotal principle in counseling ethics, encompassing intentional harm avoidance and risk reduction.
  • Veracity: Involves the ethical obligation to communicate truthfully with clients, colleagues, and involved parties during case management, fostering value for both the case manager and clients.

Case Management Models & Systematic Reviews

Case managers link clients with appropriate resources while striving to uphold safety, effectiveness, and equity. Open communication and adherence to standards are vital, and case managers must possess the necessary skills and knowledge while staying updated in the field.

Different case management models have been developed to suit various situations. For example:

  • The Brokerage Model focuses on helping clients identify needs and connecting them with available services.
  • The Clinical Model involves clinicians providing direct counseling and support, particularly for mental and chronic health conditions.
  • The Strengths-Based Model empowers clients to identify their needs, utilize informal support networks, and see the community as a resource.
  • The Intensive Model offers concentrated, high-quality services for clients with significant needs in a short timeframe.

Due to the time constraints many case managers face, conducting extensive literature reviews to understand these evidence-based practices and models (and which makes the most sense for a client) takes a lot of work. This limitation is where systematic reviews can offer support, as professional groups provide a comprehensive summary of existing research.

Systematic reviews for case managers aid in ethical, informed decision-making and support professionalism, patient safety, and quality care.

The Orbis Partners Approach: Effective Case Management Tools and Interventions

Additionally, implementing comprehensive case management software alongside evidence-based interventions and tools can aid in tracking progress, improving efficiency, and making a positive impact on clients. Orbis Partners wields a formidable arsenal of tools and methodologies underpinned by the principles of evidence-based case management.

Case Management Software and Assessments

CaseWorks by Orbis, offers a robust platform that seamlessly integrates Orbis' risk/needs and strengths assessment tools and a youth mental health tool, positioning vital information at the fingertips of professionals. CaseWorks fosters collaboration with the client and external resources, streamlines communication, and facilitates real-time decision-making, culminating in a comprehensive approach that promotes optimal client outcomes.

Orbis Partners also offers a suite of risk, needs, and strengths assessment tools. Uniting these tools with the casework process, Orbis ensures that the client's individual needs and strengths remain central. This comprehensive approach transcends a one-size-fits-all model, acknowledging the uniqueness of everyone's circumstances. Whether working with adults or youth, these tools guide professionals and empower clients.

Orbis employs a powerful eTraining platform that equips professionals with the proficiency to utilize their case management software tools effectively.

Evidence-Based Interventions

At Orbis Partners, we take great pride in being at the forefront of delivering cutting-edge assessment tools and advanced case management software to professionals in the criminal justice and human services fields. 

Our comprehensive risk assessment solutions equip practitioners with the tools to make informed decisions that positively impact at-risk youth and adults. 

Reducing Recidivism and Promoting Prosocial Behavior

Breaking the cycle of recidivism and nurturing prosocial behavior in individuals with legal involvement is a multifaceted endeavor. Evidence-based practices and case management shape these individuals' trajectories and foster a successful reintegration into society.

Evidence-based case management disrupts conventional patterns by identifying and addressing the underlying factors that contribute to criminal behavior through an informed, strategic, and client-centered approach.

Fostering Positive Behavior Change

Assessment tools provide insights that move beyond labels, revealing the multifaceted dimensions of an individual's life. By recognizing their strengths and areas of development, evidence-based case management nurtures a sense of agency and responsibility. This perspective shift propels clients to proactively embrace change, owning their rehabilitation journey and envisioning a future unburdened by past mistakes.

Prosocial behavior—a cornerstone of successful reintegration—is cultivated through targeted interventions. These interventions are not arbitrary; they stem from the assessment tools' revelations, addressing specific needs, triggers, and gaps. From life skills training to cognitive-behavioral strategies, justice-involved individuals are equipped with the tools to make informed choices, manage their emotions, and foster positive relationships.

Breaking the Cycle of Recidivism

The beauty of evidence-based case management is its adaptability. By identifying the unique triggers that lead to criminal behavior, professionals can tailor interventions to resonate with each client. This personalized approach addresses immediate challenges and forges a foundation for a future characterized by informed decisions and constructive actions.

As a result, the reduction of recidivism emerges as a natural consequence. By treating the causes rather than merely the symptoms, evidence-based case management minimizes the likelihood of relapse into criminal behavior. This ripple effect extends beyond the individual to create safer communities and a justice system relieved of its perpetual strain.

In tandem, the cultivation of prosocial behavior brings forth individuals primed for reintegration. Clients exposed to evidence-based interventions possess an enhanced capacity to contribute to their communities in a meaningful way. Empowered with life skills, coping mechanisms, and a sense of purpose, they stand poised to reintegrate as productive members of society.

Mental Health and Trauma-Informed Care: Nurturing Holistic Transformation

Mental health challenges and past traumatic experiences often lay hidden beneath the surface, influencing behavior and shaping lives. By weaving mental health considerations into evidence-based case management, professionals create a foundation for individuals to address their emotional well-being. This recognition goes beyond treating the symptoms; it delves into the core of an individual's journey, illuminating the facets that often remain shrouded.

Trauma-informed care is a pillar in Orbis Partners' methodology. By recognizing that many justice-involved individuals have experienced trauma, this approach infuses empathy into every interaction. It is a paradigm shift from asking, "What's wrong with you?" to "What happened to you?" This subtle shift in language and mindset creates an environment of understanding and support, where individuals are empowered to share their stories, confront their past, and forge a path toward healing.

By integrating trauma-informed care into evidence-based case management, professionals equip themselves with the tools to decode challenging and nuanced behaviors. They create an atmosphere where triggers are acknowledged, coping strategies are offered, and emotional well-being is prioritized. This comprehensive approach addresses the immediate challenges and builds long-term resilience and recovery.

Orbis Partners' commitment to trauma-informed care amplifies the impact of evidence-based case management. Our dedication to understanding the complexities of each client's journey underscores our belief in transformation. By approaching individuals with legal involvement (and those who serve them) with compassion, we create a space where vulnerability is met with support, leading to breakthroughs that translate into lasting change.

Integrating mental health and trauma-informed care within evidence-based case management encapsulates a profound understanding of the interconnectedness of human experiences. It embraces the truth that everyone is a sum of their past, present, and potential for the future. Through this inclusive lens, justice-involved clients are not defined by their actions alone; they are seen as individuals on a journey of healing and change.

The Bottom Line

In culmination, evidence-based case management emerges not as a mere approach but as a pivotal paradigm shift for supporting clients with legal involvement. Evidence-based case management provides the framework for justice-involved clients to undergo a transformative journey from entanglement to empowerment through rigorous assessment methodologies, personalized interventions, and an unwavering commitment to mental health and trauma-informed care.

Orbis Partners provides solutions for criminal justice and human services systems, specializing in designing and implementing services for at-risk client groups. Orbis' risk/needs and strengths assessment tools are designed to guide the casework process by incorporating an individual's unique needs. For more information about our assessments, visit our Assessments page.

Written by Orbis Partners