Parent-Child Interaction Therapy is an evidence-based intervention offered to caregivers and their children ages 2-7 years old who struggle with externalizing behaviors and/or positive parenting skills. Practitioners use in-vivo coaching to provide real-time feedback to caregivers on their parenting skills and resulting changes in child. Treatment consists of two stages: Child Directed Interaction and Parent Directed Interaction, respectively. The first stage strengthens the caregiver-child relationship while the second stage uses authoritative parenting techniques to increase compliance in defiant children.
At Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, PCIT is offered uniquely in the clinic, in the home or in other community locations to better serve the needs of at-risk families. As services are tailored to improve effectiveness, checks of fidelity to the original PCIT model are concurrently implemented. Practitioners are collecting data across a variety of domains to understand the implications of implementing PCIT within a child welfare context.