The Maryland CANS Certification and Resource Center
Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) Tool (Comprehensive)
Welcome to the CANS Certification and Resource Center. We are excited to be part of the statewide implementation of a standardized assessment tool so that we all can work towards meeting the needs of children, youth and families through a strength-based needs-driven approach. We hope that this online Center will be resource to those interested in utilizing the CANS in their work and are excited about our partnership in continuing to advance progress in Maryland.
The Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) Comprehensive Assessment is being used throughout Maryland by many different organizations and individuals, including family and systems navigators, care coordinators, and family support partners. This website provides basic information on the CANS, resources related to using the CANS, and an opportunity for individuals to become certified to use the CANS. There are several different modules of the CANS; this website focuses on the comprehensive tool.
The CANS has three primary uses—as a decision support tool, a quality improvement tool and as an outcome monitoring tool. As an assessment tool, the CANS can be used by child and family teams to develop a plan of care. As a quality improvement tool, the CANS can be used with the Treatment Fidelity Index to determine if the strengths and needs identified are incorporated into the plan of care. As an outcome monitoring tool, the CANS may be used by the larger systems of care to track aggregate improvement by children and families on the entire tool or on a particular domain of the tool.
The CANS is being used in jurisdictions throughout Maryland, and is recommended for use in several Children’s Cabinet-funded systems of care initiatives. While there are several highly regarded assessment tools available, the CANS was adopted based in part on its appropriateness for use with children from ages 0-18, its ease of administration (after receipt of training), the utility of the dimension scores in developing a profile of strengths and needs, and its accessibility (both cost and manual availability).
The CANS is incorporated into the performance measures for local management boards receiving funding for systems of care initiatives. It is recommended for use by system and family navigators, where appropriate and if developing a plan of care, and is required for use by all care management entities providing care coordination with high fidelity wraparound.
This website is provided to support existing CANS users and to train and certify new CANS users. On this website, you will find the training presentation, sample vignettes, and other related resources. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please contact the Maryland Child and Adolescent Innovations Institute at 410-706-3519 or email@example.com.
How to get Certified:
- To become certified in CANS using this online resource, please
begin by watching the online training presentation.
- After viewing the presentation,
- select Online Testing.
- You will need to complete three practice vignettes. You will then
be given an opportunity to take the CANS test.
- You will have two (2) chances to pass a CANS TEST vignette.
- A score of .70 to .74 will grant you a six month certificate. A
score above .74 will grant you a 12 month certificate. Your passing
score will then be entered into a database and you will receive a
certificate in CANS. You are required to renew your certification
each year. You can do so by logging in to the Maryland CANS website
and taking the recertification test.