Transitional Shelter Care (TSC) Program
0100-510.37 | Revision Date: 8/14/2017

Overview

This is an overview of the process for placing a child/youth in a TSC. The policy outlines the placement support and assistance available to Regional CSWs and ERCP after hours, weekends and holidays.

Table of Contents

Version Summary

This policy guide replaces the Welcome Center policy. The new Transitional Shelter Care policy provides an overview of the entrance criteria to a TSC, the available TSCs, roles and responsibilities of DCFS staff and the overall intake process.

POLICY

Transitional Shelter Care (TSC) Program

The TSC facilities provide temporary shelter for children and youth awaiting suitable foster/relative placement. Their mission is to provide the DCFS Regional Offices and the Emergency Response Command Post (ERCP) with placement support and assistance after hours, weekends and holidays. The TSC Program consists of the Accelerated Placement Team (APT), Placement Assistance Staff (PAS), Technical Assistants (TAs), and co-located DCFS staff at the TSC facilities.

The goal is to transition children and youth into a placement as quickly as possible.

  • Placement at the TSC facilities should not exceed 72 hours.
  • Prior approval is required for all children and youth entering the TSCs for temporary care and supervision.
  • If placement is secured while the child/youth is in route to a TSC, but the child/youth has not entered the TSC, it is the responsibility of the designated regional staff (CSW, HSA or other designated staff) to transport the child/youth to their identified placement.

Due to limited space at the TSC facilities, the child/youth's belongings (including cell phones and any personal valuables) must be kept to a minimum. TSC staff should ensure that the youth only take sufficient clothing and other belongings for a couple of days (i.e. belongings should fit in a backpack). The remainder of the child/youth's belongings should be stored in a secure location (e.g. CSW's respective office), pending a more permanent placement or reunification with their family. In addition, CSWs should request the child/youth turn in their cell phone to either the CSW or respective TSC designated staff. In the event that the child/youth does not agree to turn in a cell phone or other valuable, CSW is to document on CWS/CMS.

Medical Clearance to Enter a TSC

All children/youth entering a TSC will undergo a medical clearance and/or screening at the LAC+USC Medical Center Hub or at any other Department of Health Services (DHS).

  • The Regional staff transporting the child/youth to the HUB must remain with the child/youth until the medical screening is completed.
  • The medical screening does not take the place of the initial medical Hub exam.
  • If a child/youth needs emergency medical treatment, it must be sought at a hospital emergency department prior to arriving at a TSC.
  • If a child is returning from being AWOL, CSWs should direct the youth to a local regional DCFS office and not a Medical Hub.

Newborns

To avoid multiple placements and/or congregate care, involvement of the APT SCSW is necessary when a newborn is on a "hospital hold" and out-of-home placement for the newborn is imminent.

The APT SCSW will contact the doctor on duty at the LAC+USC Medical Center Hub and request that the baby remain at the hospital until a foster placement is secured. This will facilitate placement of the newborn directly from the hospital.

TSC Facilities

The Department has established contracts with (4) existing Short Term Residential Therapeutic Placements (STRTPs) to provide and operate the TSC facilities. The TSC facilities consist of (5) five shelter care centers located throughout Los Angeles County. The TSC locations entry criteria, and number of beds available are listed below:

Agency

Contract

Bed Capacity

Services & Level of Care

Junior Blind of America

5300 Angeles Vista Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA 90043

  • New Detentions
  • Coed, Ages 0-17
  • Replacements
  • Coed, Ages 0-5
26
  • New Detentions, including pregnant teens / NMDs
  • Minor parent regardless of entry status

  • New detention / replacement

Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services

2933 N. El Nido Dr., Altadena, CA 91001

  • Replacements
  • Boys, ages 6-17
  • CSEC male victims
  • New Detention or Replacements
16
  • Replacements
  • Males will be assigned to separate cottages based on age
  • Transgender identified males

Five Acres

760 Mountain View Street, Altadena, CA 91001

  • New Detentions
  • Replacements
  • Females (ages 6-14)
10
  • Youth with high mental health needs

David & Margaret, 1350 Third Street, La Verne, CA 91750

Muller Cottage

  • Replacements
  • Females (ages 11-17)
  • CSEC female victims
  • New Detention or Replacements
10
  • Pregnant youth if it is a replacement

David & Margaret

1350 Third St.

La Verne, CA 91750

Lowery Cottage

  • NMD female
  • Replacements or AB12 Re-entry
  • Female ages 16-17

6

  • Adult female
  • Including parenting NMDs and their child(ren)
  • Female ages 16-17 will be allowed provided a NMD does not have an infant residing in the placement with her.
Total number of TSC beds available   68  

TSC vacancies for NMD females are limited. CSWs should consult with the APT SCSW.

Accelerated Placement Team (APT)

When a child/youth must be placed in out-of-home-care, or the Child and Family Team (CFT) makes the recommendation, the Regional CSW should begin the search for placement as soon as possible. However, in emergent situations, the Regional CSW may require assistance with the placement/ replacement of a child after hours. When the Regional CSW has exhausted all search efforts, they can obtain assistance from the APT unit by calling (213) 743-8610. Refer to the procedure section for a list of required forms.

Placement Assistance Staff (PAS)

Placement Assistance Staff include Group Supervisors (GSs) and Human Services Aides (HSAs). The PAS assist ERCP and Regional CSWs with monitoring youth at the LAC+USC Medical Center Hub lobby area, and/or transporting a child/youth to a TSC or identified placement.

The PAS are available to provide assistance during the following hours:

Monday - Friday (Swing Shift)

  • 3:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
  • An on duty PAS SCSW may be contacted by calling clerical support staff at (323) 409-2296

Sunday - Friday (Graveyard Shift)

  • 11:30 p.m. - 7:00 a.m.
  • An on duty PAS SCSW at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub is available at (323) 409-6482

Saturday, Sunday and Holidays

  • All day/swing/graveyard hours
  • An on duty PAS SCSW at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub is available at (323) 409-6482

During normal business hours (Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.), CSWs are to contact their assigned regional technical assistance staff for placement assistance.

Co-located SCSWs at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub

DCFS co-located SCSWs at the HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub are the TSC intake liasions for APT and all TSC agencies and may be contacted during the following business hours:

 

Monday - Friday (Swing Shift)

  • 3:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
  • An on duty SCSW may be contacted by calling clerical support staff at (323) 409-2296

Sunday - Friday (Graveyard Shift)

  • 11:30 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.
  • An on duty SCSW at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub is available at (323) 409-6482

Saturday, Sunday and Holidays (all day /swing/ graveyard shift)

  • 11:30 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.
  • An on duty SCSW at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub is available at (323) 409-6482

TSC Co-located DCFS Staff

DCFS co-located SCSWs and CSWs are housed at each TSC as liasions for the APT, designated TSC agency, regional offices and ERCP as follows:

  • Monday-Sunday (Day Shift) 7:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Sunday (Swing Shift) 3:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.

An on duty SCSW/CSW may be contacted by calling the following numbers:

Junior Blind (323) 295-4555 ext. 358/359
David and Margaret Cottage (909) 596-5921 ext. 3618/3643
David and Margaret House (909) 596-5921 ext. 3612
Five Acres (626) 773-3779
Hathaway Sycamores (626) 243-9043 ext. 6321 / 6329

Sunday - Thursday (Graveyard Shift) 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.

  • An on-duty TSC SCSW is available at Hathaway Sycamores by calling (626) 243-9043 ext. 6319

Saturday, Sunday and Holidays (all day / swing / graveyard hours)

  • An on-duty SCSW at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub is available by calling (323) 409-6482.

Phone numbers to TSC co-located agencies are intended for CSW and DCFS staff only. If necessary, the agency co-located staff can provide an approved contact number for the public.

Office of Child Protection (OCP) Pilot Program

The OCP Pilot Program is a component of the TSC program. It consists of Department of Mental Health (DMH) staff, DCFS and Department of Health Services (DHS) staff. The Mental Health Triage Assessment Team (MHTAT) assess children/youth entering a TSC to determine the immediate level of support and intervention needed.

The goal of the team is to:

  • Assist with treatment engagement
  • Stabilize the youth
  • Provide linkage to ensure the needs of the Katie A. Subclass are met

The Triage therapist will refer the child/youth to the OCP if determined that the child/youth meet the following criteria :

  • Age birth to twenty-one (21) years old
  • Open DCFS case
  • Child/youth has three (3) or more CWC or YWC entries due to placement disruptions within the last twelve (12) months
  • Child/youth has a Serious Emotional Disturbance (SED) Diagnosis and meets Medi-Cal California's federal Medicaid program
  • Medicinal necessity criteria for specialty mental health services

The assessment will assist the CSW and the CFT in placement decision making. Regional CSWs are to work collaboratively with OCP to ensure the needs of the child/youth are met. OCP will monitor the child/youth in their community placement for a maximum of six (6) months or until the child/youth is stabilized in placement and engaged in treatment to:

  • Ensure the placement is a good match
  • Confirm the child/youth has been securely engaged with their mental health provider

OCP will provide the following services:

  • Intensive Care Coordination (ICC) / Child and Family Team Meetings (CFTMs)
  • In-Home Based Services (IHBS)
  • Other mental health services, including, but not limited to the following:
  • 24/7 Crisis Intervention
  • Assessment
  • Individual Therapy
  • Linkage
  • Targeted Case Management

Back to Policy  

PROCEDURE

Placement / Replacement After Business Hours

ERCP and Regional CSW Responsibilities

The following steps are required to initiate a placement search and to obtain approval to transport a child(ren)/youth to a 72-hour TSC:

  1. Complete the TSC Entry Packet and include the following completed forms:
  2. In addition to the DCFS 709 and DCFS 280, Regional CSWs are to include the following information/forms:
    • DCFS 6017, Emergency Access & Placement Referral Form (ERCP excluded)
    • Placement Search Efforts
      • Name of the foster parent/FFA contacted and their response
      • Date and time of contact
      • Reason for refusal of the placement
    • Current copy of a court approved Psychotropic Medication Authorization (PMA)
      • Authorization ( JV 220, 220A, 223) - applies to children/youth requiring a refill of psychotropic medication on open cases
    • DCFS 179 and 179 MH
      • Required for new detentions, if available
  3. For a child/youth transported to the HUB/LAC + USC Medical Center Hub, upload a completed and signed Entry Packet to the DCFS 280 Automation System prior to transporting the child/youth.
  4. For placement of newborn babies, contact the APT SCSW on duty.
  5. For "Replacement Only", Regional CSWs are to include the additional documents/information below:
    • Detention Hearing Minute Order
    • Medical Prescriptions
    • Medi-Cal Letter
    • Medical Prescriptions
    • Any other pertinent documentation regarding the youth's safety and well being (e.g. medical/mental health hospital discharge paperwork, etc.)
  6. Forward the entry packet to the Region SCSW, ARA and RA for approval.
  7. After obtaining approval, scan and email all signed TSC Entry Packet attachments to the following email address:
    • EXD-DCFS_APT@dcfs.lacounty.gov

ERCP / Regional SCSW Responsibilities

  1. Review and sign the DCFS 6017 and TSC Entry Packet.
    • ERCP excluded from this approval.
    • If not approved, return to the CSW for corrective action and/or consultation as appropriate.
  2. Forward to the ARA for further approval.
  3. Upload the approved/ signed DCFS 6017 and the Entry Packet via the DCFS 280 Automation System.
  4. Transfer the search to the APT SCSW.

Regional ARA Responsibilities

  1. Review and Sign the DCFS 6017 and TSC Entry Packet.
    • If not approved, return to the SCSW for corrective action and/or consultation, as appropriate.
  2. Forward to the RA for further approval.
    • In emergency situations, where the RA is unavailable, the ARA may sign on behalf of the RA.

Regional RA Responsibilities

  1. Review and sign the DCFS 6017 and TSC Entry Packet.
    • If not approved, return to the ARA for corrective action and/or consultation, as appropriate.

Medical Clearance and Intake Process to a TSC

ERCP and Regional CSW Responsibilities

  1. Confirm receipt of the approved packet by calling the APT Duty SCSW at (213) 743-8610.
  2. Obtain approval to transport the child/youth to the TSC from the APT Duty SCSW.
  3. A HUB referral is not required for medical clearance.
    • However, if an initial medical exam or forensic evaluation is required, generate an electronic HUB referral prior to or upon arrival at the HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub.
  4. Transport the child/youth for medical clearance to:
    • LAC+USC HUB/ LAC+USC Medical Center Hub
    • (Violence Intervention Center)
    • 2010 Zonal Avenue, 3P- 40A
    • Los Angeles, CA 90033
    • (323) 409-2297
  5. Upon arrival to the HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub, check in with both the :
    • TSC DCFS Co-located SCSW in the lobby
    • HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub staff member(s) for medical clearance.
  6. If checking the child/youth in after hours (11:00 p.m. - 7:00 a.m.), contact the TSC HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub DCFS co-located staff at (323) 409-6482.

Co-located SCSWs Responsibilities

  1. Welcome / greet the CSW/PAS checking in the child/youth.
  2. Process intake of youth entering TSC by contacting the on Duty APT SCSW.
  3. Verify completed "Entry Packet" including:
    • DCFS 280
    • DCFS 6017
    • DCFS 709
  4. Gather the following information:
    • Child/Youth's whereabouts prior to TSC entry
    • Is the child/youth prescribed psychotropic medication? If so, collect the medication?
    • Is the PMA current?
      • CSW is responsible for providing the most current PMA.
  5. If the PMA is not current or the child/youth does not have any medication, contact the Duty APT SCSW and ask if an EXODUS referral is needed.
  6. If a referral is not needed, contact the TSC co-located staff via e-mail and/or telephone to alert staff of pending transportation of youth waiting at HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub.
  7. Once the youth receives medical clearance, review the paperwork, including the DCFS 561, and ensure that the paperwork reads, "Medically cleared for placement".
  8. Designate a TSC location for the child/youth based on age and circumstances of the child/youth.
  9. Advise the Regional/ERCP CSW of the identified TSC where the youth will be transported.
    • Alert the CSW that the TSC is limited to 72 hours.
  10. Explain to the Region/ERCP CSW that they have the option to transport the child/youth to the TSC if PAS staff are not immediately available.
  11. Contact the TSC co-located staff via e-mail adn/or telephone to alert staff of pending transportation of child/youth awaiting at the HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub.
  12. If PAS staff are available to transport child/youth to the designated TSC, assign the PAS to transport the child/youth accordingly.
  13. Contact the designated TSC co-located DCFS staff and alert them that the child/youth is in route.
    • Provide the contact information for the PAS who is transporting the child/youth.
  14. Record the following on the hand-written log at the TSC DCFS co-located HUB/LAC+USC Medical Center Hub check in:
    • Name of the PAS
    • Child/youth's name
    • Destination
    • Time of departure

PAS Responsibilities

Transporting the child/youth to the TSC:

  1. Make contact with the co-located SCSW/CSW and TSC agency representatives and alert staff of the youth's estimated arrival to the TSC agency.

Transporting the child/youth from the TSC:

  1. Make contact with the co-located SCSW/CSW and alert staff of the driving assignment to the designated placement.

APT SCSW Responsibilities

  1. Complete the Children's Call Screening sheet upon receipt of a request from the regional office to transport a child/youth to a TSC.
  2. Assess whether reasonable efforts have been made to place the child/youth:
    • In the least restrictive setting
    • With maternal/paternal relatives
    • With a Nonrelative Extended Family Member (NREFM).
  3. If assisting with placement of a newborn, contact the doctor on duty where the newborn child is hospitalized and request that the child remain at the hospital until a placement is found.
  4. Assess whether the child/youth should be transported to a TSC.
  5. Determine where the child/youth should be transported. Refer to the list of TSC agencies.
  6. Approve the transportation of the child/youth to the TSC after verifying that the following documents have been uploaded to the DCFS 280 Automated System.
    • DCFS 6017
    • Entry Packet
  7. Assign the placement search to an APT Specialist CSW or forward the request to an APT Technical Assistance (TA) Supervisor to initiate a placement search.
  8. Upon notification of placement, enter the placement information in the:.
    • Manual log
    • Internal APT assignment log
    • Electronic Child Awaiting Placement System (CAP)
  9. Approve the placement and write the address on the placement documents.
  10. Make a copy of the placement documents.
  11. Assign a GS/HSA to transport the child/youth to the placement and sign the child/youth out on both the manual and electronic CAP system.
    • Provide the GS/HSA with pertinent information regarding the child/youth, including, but not limited to the name, age, current medication, if applicable, any known allergies, etc. to ensure safe transportation.
  12. Forward the referral or DCFS 280 to the assigned APT TA.

APT TA Responsibilities

  1. Complete the Medi-Cal letter.
  2. Process and enter the placement and budget information to CWS/CMS.
  3. Send an e-mail to the assigned CSW with the placement information and the child/youth's whereabouts.
  4. Enter a contact on CWS/CMS with the placement information.

Back to Procedure  

APPROVALS

SCSW Approval

  • DCFS 280
  • DCFS 6017

ARA Approval

  • DCFS 6017

RA Approval

  • DCFS 6017
HELPFUL LINKS

Forms

CWS/CMS

DCFS 179, Parental Consent and Authorization for Medical Care and Release of Health and Education Records

DCFS 179 MH, Parental Consent for Child's Assessment & Participation in Mental Health and/or Regional Center Developmental Services

DCFS 280, Technical Assistance Action Request

DCFS 709, Foster Child's Needs and Case Plan Summary

DCFS 6017, Emergency Access & Placement Referral Form

LA Kids

DCFS 129, Agency-Relative Caregiver Placement Agreement

DCFS 179, Parental Consent and Authorization for Medical Care and Release of Health and Education Records

DCFS 179 MH, Parental Consent for Child's Assessment & Participation in Mental Health and/or Regional Center Developmental Services

DCFS 280, Technical Assistance Action Request

DCFS 709, Foster Child's Needs and Case Plan Summary

DCFS 4158, General Medical Consent

DCFS 5210, Placement Address Disclosure

DCFS 6017, Emergency Access & Placement Referral Form

DCFS 6020,Things to Know Before You Leave Against DCFS Social Worker's Advice

SOC 154 A, FFA Agreement

SOC 156, Foster Home Agreement

REFERENCED POLICY GUIDES

0070-548.01, Child and Family Teams

0100-510.60, Placement Considerations for Children

0600-500.00, Medical Hubs

0700-500.10, Education of DCFS Supervised Children