The Community Case Detection Tool (CCDT) is developed to address the treatment gap by working with trusted and respected community gatekeepers. The CCDT is made up of illustrated narratives depicting common examples of children experiencing emotional, behavioral and/or family problems. These vignettes are paired with a simple decision algorithm that supports determining the severity and functional impact of the problems identified and advises the user of the tool about follow up action. In case of a positive match with one of the vignettes, the gatekeepers are trained to encourage and support help-seeking.
The accuracy of the tool has been evaluated in two different countries and settings: in the occupied Palestinian territories in school settings and in community settings in Sri Lanka. To determine accuracy of the tool children and adolescents detected were invited for a structured clinical interview with a psychologist to determine the need to access mental health treatment based on information provided during the clinical interview.
In future pilot studies, community gatekeepers using the tool will be trained in a brief motivational and barrier-reducing intervention, the ‘help-seeking encouragement strategy’. This strategy, currently under development, will build confidence to approach caregivers or adolescents and employs techniques to explore potential barriers and encourage help-seeking.