What heals traumatized kids? Answers are lacking

CHICAGO (AP) — A government-funded analysis finds that comparatively little is known about how to effectively treat child victims of traumatic events, even though such occurrences are common.

A report sponsored by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality finds that school-based counseling treatments showed the most promise in helping young survivors and witnesses heal.

But there's no hard proof that anxiety drugs or other medication work and far more research is needed to provide solid answers.

According to the report, about two-thirds of U.S. children and teens younger than 18 will experience at least one traumatic event, including shootings and other violence, car crashes and weather disasters.

Most will not suffer any long-term psychological problems, but about 13 percent will develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress.

The report's concludes that no one knows which treatments are best, or if some work better in certain situations.

Sound:

%@AP Links

270-a-06-(Valerie Hoffman, psychiatric epidemiologist, Research Triangle Institute, in AP interview)-"be most effective"-Valerie Hoffman, a psychiatric epidemiologist at the Research Triangle Institute, says there haven't been many good studies on the subject. (10 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *270 (02/10/13)>> 00:06 "be most effective"

268-w-33-(Warren Levinson, AP correspondent, with Valerie Hoffman, psychiatric epidemiologist, Research Triangle Institute)--How should counselors help children get over the trauma of being exposed to mass shootings? No one really knows. AP correspondent Warren Levinson reports. (10 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *268 (02/10/13)>> 00:33

271-a-10-(Valerie Hoffman, psychiatric epidemiologist, Research Triangle Institute, in AP interview)-"yeah, not good"-Valerie Hoffman, a psychiatric epidemiologist at the Research Triangle Institute, says it would be hard to design a study of the effects of various coping therapies on children. (10 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *271 (02/10/13)>> 00:10 "yeah, not good"

269-a-12-(Valerie Hoffman, psychiatric epidemiologist, Research Triangle Institute, in AP interview)-"already been occurring"-Valerie Hoffman, a psychiatric epidemiologist at the Research Triangle Institute, says she was after information on how to treat children who'd heard about violent incidents like mass shootings. (10 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *269 (02/10/13)>> 00:12 "already been occurring"

272-a-10-(Valerie Hoffman, psychiatric epidemiologist, Research Triangle Institute, in AP interview)-"in this area"-Valerie Hoffman, a psychiatric epidemiologist at the Research Triangle Institute, says the effects of coping therapies on children should be better studied. (10 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *272 (02/10/13)>> 00:10 "in this area"

©2014 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.