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What is a MDT?

Date: October 17, 2013 Categories: Blog

Children’s Advocacy Centers were created with the purpose to better serve children who are victims of physical abuse, sexual abuse, and/or witness to violent crime. In order to respond to child abuse in communities, CACs use a multi-disciplinary team, “MDT,” approach. This inter-agency approach includes law enforcement, social services, medical, prosecutors, victim advocacy and mental health professionals. The MDT approach ensures the most effective coordinated response possible.

The Multi-Disciplinary Approach improves communication among agencies, makes pertinent information available for all involved professionals, and prevents duplication of services.

Prior to the Children’s Advocacy Center model, children would often be treated as adults and were expected to disclose what happened to dozens of professionals. Because forensic interviews are conducted at CACs, the number of people with whom a child discloses to is significantly reduced, which helps prevent revictimization.

According to the National Children’s Alliance, “Children’s advocacy centers are modeled on the simple but powerful concept of coordination between community agencies and professionals involved in the intervention system. Today, there are more than 750 children’s advocacy centers nationwide, and more on the way. Children’s advocacy centers emphasize the coordination of investigation and intervention services by bringing together professionals and agencies as a multidisciplinary team to create a child-focused approach to child abuse cases.”