Question 1 (Q1): Should I take the practice exam?
Answer 1 (A1): This is entirely up to you. You are given 2 hours to test and if you pass the practice exam, it will not count towards your certification so this will likely double the amount of testing time which is why many people opt to move directly to the real exam. No one gets penalized for taking the test more than once and there is no limit on the number of times that you can take the test. One benefit to taking the practice exam is that it will show you which answers that were incorrect so that you can figure out where to adjust your thinking or seek consultation to help support your efforts to pass the certification test.
Q2: What do I do if I work in 2 Counties?
A2: Email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for help registering your account under both Counties.
Q3: Do I have to take multiple certification exams if I serve multiple age groups of people?
A3: No, if you pass the certification exam for any age group (CANS or ANSA), you are certified to complete any of the CANS/ANSA versions.
Q4: How do I know what caregiver to rate in the exam when there are multiple referenced in the test vignette?
A4: The name of the caregiver that you should rate during the test is listed at the top of each vignette but make sure you ONLY rate the caregiver within the caregiver needs domain. The rest of the ratings in the CANS/ANSA should be based on the strengths and needs of the youth/young adult/adult who is officially the identified client/patient.
Well it is your lucky day! We have created a version of the new and improved CANS 0-24, with all the changes embedded and highlighted through different symbols including new items, name changes, and description changes. The changes were based on the following:
In the new virtual environment, we’ve all had new challenges added to our already sometimes difficult jobs. Some of these challenges are as simple as technical barriers. Alameda County CANS/ANSA users are issued a variety of devices to use for their work. You could be on a phone, laptop, desktop, Chromebook, or iPad and all of these have large or small screens that make work easier or harder depending on what you’re doing. We also often don’t have printers available at home the way we might have at the office to print big documents like the CANS or ANSA manuals. This can negatively impact some people’s learning as well. Your goal when testing on CANS/ANSA is to pass the test and we want to support you with some suggestions:
The Alameda County Behavioral Health CANS/ANSA Collaborative is currently offering the following live online trainings on an ongoing basis:
The following are the dates for forthcoming offerings of these trainings:
To enroll in one of these trainings, click on the link below to go to the Transformational Collaborative Outcomes Management (TCOM) Website and follow the additional steps described below.
If have any issues with this process, try using the guide below or email email@example.com.
Are you interested in learning how to utilize the CANS or ANSA in the Treatment Planning Process? Did you know that if you conduct the CANS or ANSA collaboratively that the treatment plan essentially writes itself? The "Treatment Planning with CANS/ANSA" training explores how to effectively use CANS and ANSA tools and TCOM (Transformative Collaborative Outcomes Management) principles in the service planning process. Participants will learn about developing a shared vision with clients and explore how to translate this into CANS/ANSA scores that support and guide ongoing collaborative treatment planning activities and documentation. Participants will learn how to prioritize and address CANS/ANSA items in service planning activities. The training includes group activities, vignette work, and service planning examples that align with Alameda County Quality Assurance guidelines. The next training will be November 18th from 1-3pm.
Get ready for the Launch of the Alameda County Child Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) for Ages Birth to 24
The new CANS (Birth to 24) will be tentatively launching in the summer of 2020. This will be the third edition of the Alameda County CANS and it will integrate the Early Childhood (Birth to 5), Child and Youth (6-17) and the Transitional Age Youth (18-24) versions into one document.
Our current versions of CANS do not allow for continuity of questions or long-term CANS data analysis and did not include all of the state mandated questions.
The new CANS (Birth to 24) will have 10 Domains and within each domain, there will be sub-sections by age group, as some questions only pertain to specific age groups:
There will be 7 modules. Modules are more specific questions that will need to be answered based on a CANS response of a 1, 2, or 3 on certain questions. There are 7 questions that will trigger a module. The modules are:
Hopefully, further details can be shared with all agencies in May 2020 including the CANS (Birth to 24) Manual and Scoresheet, which are being tested and finalized now.
Facts about the transition to CANS (Birth to 24):
Please contact Christine Mukai if you have any questions related to CANS (Birth to 24) at: Christine.Mukai@acgov.org or 510-567-8238.
Like most of the Bay Area, many service providers have begun exploring the intricacies of working from home. At times this has meant connecting with kids, teens, families, and young adult clients remotely through phone, video, or other tele-health modalities, and often in the context of new evolving demands from families and our communities.
With the call to action to many providers to maintain the continuity of care, we find the need to re-balance ourselves and move beyond the technology challenges and general uncertainties to fully ground ourselves in values underlying the CANS--collaboration and client care.
Our clients thrive when they feel safe, seen, heard and helped. This calls on us to be there--not to fix, but to provide the containment to hold all the new needs and strengths that are arising with these changing circumstances. The ability to maintain a transformational relationship in the context of a pandemic is founded on the ability to provide clients a steady, authentic presence in a sea of unknowns, and to commit to their care, understanding that in times like this, your services are needed more than ever.
Social distancing does not need to mean social isolation. But it does mean that we have to be intentional about connecting. While we may not be able to provide quick fixes or cures to the pandemic, our presence holds healing and transformative power. Remember, there is value in maintaining and tending to those relationships, innoculating against fear with accurate information, and reminding families that we are still committed to their transformational change and intend to still see them face-to-face when this is all over.
By Cinthya Chin Herrera on Behalf of the Alameda County TCOM Collaborative
Resources to Support TCOM amidst COVID-19 Challenges:
May 22 and 29, 2020
April D. Fernando, PhD Center for Innovation in Population Health
University of Kentucky
Time: 9:00am – 1:00pm
This course will be conducted via video-conference and attendance at both sessions is required.
Course Description: The Alameda County Adult Needs and Strengths Assessment (ANSA) and Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) are a collaboratively completed measure of either individual adult or child and family strengths and needs. These evidence-based, standardized assessments were developed to support decision-making, including level of care and action planning, to facilitate quality improvement initiatives, and to allow for the monitoring of clinical and functional outcomes. As a communication tool, it facilitates the linkage between the assessment process and the design of individualized service plans. The ANSA/CANS Certified Trainer Training workshop is designed for individuals who have completed the ANSA/CANS Orientation and TCOM Overview and are interested in coaching and/or training their staff on the ANSA or CANS. Key concepts and skills will be practiced through small group discussions, exercises and activities.
In addition to participating in this 2-session video-conference workshop, ANSA/CANS Certified Trainer credentialing includes:
• Achieving a ANSA/CANS certification reliability of .80 or above;
• Developing examples of the Six Key Principles of a communimetric tool;
•Developing ANSA/CANS domain level mini-vignettes to help in identification of specific domain items and determine action levels;
•Developing and submitting one original vignettes with recommended action levels and rationale using the ANSA/CANS;
•Developing a case plan using the corresponding action levels from the trainer developed vignette; and
•Articulating an introduction to TCOM and the ANSA/CANS to be delivered to clients and their families.
At the end of the 2-session workshop and once all credentialing steps and materials noted above are met, trainers will be provided access to ANSA/CANS training curriculum and materials on TCOMtraining.com. CANS Certified Trainers are to re-certify annually on TCOMtraining.com to maintain their trainer status. Certified Trainer re-certification requires annual re-certification ANSA or CANS reliability of .80 or above. Attendance at the annual TCOM Conference once every 2-3 years is highly recommended.
Michael Kessler, LPCC, CRC is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor. He began his work in mental health settings in 1994 as a Registered Music Therapist (RMT). In 2011 Michael began his work at Alameda County Behavioral Health Care Services, and currently he is the Clinical Program Specialist for the Older Adult Division. In that capacity, he ensures that the needs of Alameda County’s older adult mental health consumers are being addressed and that services for that population are available and implemented. Previously, Michael spent 15 years as the Director of Therapeutic Activities at the San Francisco Mental Health Rehabilitation Center (SFMHRC), where he was responsible for the development, implementation and supervision of the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Inpatient Program. During his tenure at SFMHRC he was also a Lecturer at the Department of Counseling at San Francisco State University, where he taught Advanced Counseling Process and supervised students in advanced practicum and internships. Throughout his career he has been an advocate for the use of expressive arts therapies, primarily music therapy, in the design and development of psychiatric rehabilitation programs.
Blog content is created by the shared effort of the Alameda TCOM Collaborative members. Send feedback through the Contact page.