Case type(s) of treatment settings and strategies

Case : Allison

Allison is a 17-year-old Caucasian woman who is introducing herself to you at a drop-in runaway shelter. She dropped out of school 3 months ago and left home 1 month ago after repeated issues with her parents. Allison was staying with various friends on a night-to-night basis until a week ago when she started “crashing with my new girlfriend.” Allison reports she is a lesbian and left home because her father has been physically and sexually abusive to her. She reports her mother is a drunk and would not do anything about her father’s abuse. Allison, who has a history of alcohol and drug use that she is reluctant to share, came to the shelter after getting into a fight with her girlfriend and has no money.


  • What would be your initial diagnostic impression of this case?
  • What risk factors and behaviors are present in this case?
  • What individual and family interventions might need to be considered?
  • What type(s) of treatment settings and strategies may be needed?
  • What cultural, ethnic, or special population factors may play a role in Allison’s treatment planning?
  • Assuming Allison has a substance-use disorder, what specific challenges may need to be addressed to maintain her recovery to avoid relapse?
  • What specific roles could or should healthcare providers, businesses, schools, and organizations play in Allison’s assessment, intervention, and treatment?
  • What specific client advocacy, current public policy discussions, or ethical or legal issues may be related to this case study?


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