Glossary

Welcome to the Erie Sprout Glossary of Terms and Acronyms. This glossary provides the definitions of many commonly used terms and acronyms relating to mental and behavioral health, drug and alcohol, social work and sociology, Child Welfare, Juvenile Probation, and much more. Just choose a letter from the menu below to reach the page with the term you would like to find.


A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z


This glossary is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for direct consultation with a qualified professional.


Glossary – A


AA – Alcoholics Anonymous

AARP – American Association of Retired Persons

Accessibility – Extent to which a program or services can be reached by those who want or need them.

Accreditation – An official decision made by a recognized organization that a health care plan, network, or other delivery system complies with applicable standards.

ACF – Administration of Children and Families

ACLD – Association for Children with Learning Disabilities

ACLU – American Civil Liberties Union

ACMH – Association for Children’s Mental Health

ACSW – Association of Certified Social Workers

ACT – Assertive Community Treatment

Action Learning – Hands-on approach to teaching and learning in which students work collaboratively to increase their understanding through an active process of “doing and reflecting” on real-life tasks, problems, issues, or assignments.

Active Listening – People are actively listening when they respond to someone in a way that shows that they have listened to what the person has said and understand how the person feels and what they are saying about themselves. A helpful way to do this is for the listener, having heard what the speaker has said, to then repeat, in the listener’s own words, what he or she thinks the speaker said.

Activities of Daily Living (ADL) – An index or scale which measured a patient’s degree of independence in bathing, dressing, using the toilet, eating, and moving from one place to another.

Acute Care – Medical treatment rendered to individuals whose illnesses or health problems are of a short-term or episodic nature. Acute care facilities are those hospitals that mainly serve persons with short-term health problems.

Adjustment Disorder – Extreme reactions in adolescents to social demands for establishing personal identity and independence from family.

Administrative Case Management – Assessment for individuals experiencing significant mental health problems, referral to appropriate community services, and case management services.

Adult Mobile Medication Management – Management of psychiatric medication for adults with serious mental illness who reside in the community.

Adult Protective Services (APS) – Receives and investigates reports of abuse, neglect, and exploitation of elderly persons (defined as age 65 or older) and persons with disabilities.

Adoption – The legal process of adding a person to an existing family. Adoption is meant to be permanent and the goal is to provide lifelong security to the child and the adoptive family.

Advocacy – The process of actively supporting the cause of an individual or group, speaking in favor of, or being intercessor or defender.

AFC – Adult Foster Care

AFCARS – Automated Foster Care and Adoption Reporting System

After School Program – Services which focus on the development of skill building and problem solving for school-age youth who are at risk for delinquent behavior.

AHEDD – Association for Habilitation and Employment of Developmentally Disabled

Alternative Therapy – An alternative approach to mental health care that emphasizes the interrelationship between mind, body and spirit.

AMA – American Medical Association

American Psychological Association (APA) – The largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States and the world’s largest association of psychologists.

American Public Human Services Association (APHSA) – A nonprofit, bipartisan organization of individuals and agencies concerned with human services.

AMI – Alliance for the Mentally Ill

Annual Performance Reviews – A systematic, periodic review and analysis of an employee’s job performance by a superior, to compare that performance to a set of predetermined standards, identify strengths and weaknesses, and develop a plan to improve an employee’s performance.

Anxiety Disorders (in children) – Characterized by fear, worry or dread that greatly impairs the ability to function and is out or proportion to the circumstances. There are many types of anxiety disorders, including generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, separation anxiety disorder and social phobias. Most commonly, children refuse to go to school, often using physical symptoms as the reason.

APA – American Psychiatric Association

Appendicitis – Inflammation and infection of the appendix. It seems to develop when the appendix becomes blocked by hard fecal matter or swollen lymph nodes in the intestine that occur with various infections.

Apprenticeship Training – A formal process by which individuals learn their jobs through a combination of classroom instruction and on-the-job training from a skilled expert in their specific job.

Appropriate Education – An individual education program specially designed to meet the unique needs of a child who has a disability.

APWA – American Public Welfare Association

Area Agency on Aging (AAA) – The local agency that receives funds to care for the needs of older adults. Pennsylvania has 52 sub-state area agencies on aging.

ASAM – American Society of Addictive Medicine

ASI – Addiction Severity Index

ASL – American Sign Language

Asperger’s Syndrome – Less severe than autism, children with Asperger’s syndrome have impaired social interactions similar to those of children with autism, as well as stereotyped or repetitive behaviors and mannerisms and nonfunctional rituals. Their speech and language skills are normal, but they often have weaknesses in pragmatic (social) language. They have normal intelligence but also often have intense interests in narrow topics to the exclusion of other developmentally appropriate pursuits.

Assertive Community Treatment Team (ACT) – Intense mental health services and supports for adults with serious mental illness. Treatment is delivered by a team of trained individuals and is provided in the home and community.

ASU – Adult Services Unit

AT – Assistive Technology

Attachment Disorder – A condition in which individuals have difficulty forming loving, lasting, intimate relationships.

Autistic Disorder (Autism) – A complex developmental disability that appears in early childhood, usually before age three. Autism prevents children and adolescents from interacting normally with other people and affects almost every aspect of their social and psychological development.

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) – Disorders in which young children cannot develop normal social relationships, use language abnormally or not at all, behave in compulsive and ritualistic ways, and may fail to develop normal intelligence. Disorders include Asperger’s syndrome, Autism, Childhood disintegrative disorder, and Rett Syndrome.

Avoidance – A symptom of a disorder manifested by avoiding the establishment of new interpersonal contacts to the extent that social functioning is impaired.

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Glossary – B


Babies First Project – Outreach, education, and intervention services for pregnant and postpartum women with substance abuse related concerns.

Baseline Information – Information that is collected before a program begins to provide a basis for planning, implementation, and evaluation.

BCDCS – Bureau of Child Day Care Services

Behavioral Health Rehabilitative Services (BHRS) – Home, school, or community-based treatment services for individuals under 21 years of age who have a serious mental health problem.

Behavior Modification – The application of conditioning techniques (rewards or punishments) to reduce or eliminate problematic behavior, or to teach people new responses.

Beneficiary – A person certified as eligible for health care services.

BFO – Bureau of Financial Operations

BH/MCO – Behavioral Health/Managed Care Organization

BHA – Bureau of Hearing and Appeals

BHCP – Basic Health Care Package

Bipolar Disorder (in children) – Periods of intense elation and excitation alternate with periods of depression and despair, while the mood may be normal in between those periods. Children may rapidly go from being happy and active to being depressed, withdrawn and sluggish, or full of rage and violent.

Blended Case Management (BCM) – A Case Manager will work with an individual with mental health problems to identify and access necessary community services and resources.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder – Somatoform disorder in which children become preoccupied with an imagined defect in appearance, or become excessively concerned with a slight abnormality, such as a wart.

Borderline Personality – A highly unstable personality style characterized by intense personal relationship problems. Individuals with borderline personality often suffer from depression, anxiety, and the fear of being abandoned.

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Glossary – C


CAF – Common Application Form

CAFS – Child Abuse and Family Services

CAO – County Assistance Office

CAPTA – Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act

Career Development – Education, support, and employment planning as well as access to services for individuals, ranging from career awareness and exploration, counseling, education and training opportunities and certifications, to long-range “career pathway” plans leading to better jobs, greater job satisfaction or higher pay.

CareerLink – Pennsylvania’s one-stop delivery system of employment, education, and training services available to job seekers, those who want to further their careers, and employers; universal access gained virtually through websites and through regional CareerLink sites.

Caregiver – A person who has special training to help people with mental health problems.

Case Management – A service that assists clients to obtain and coordinate community resources such as income assistance, education, housing, medical care, treatment, vocational preparation, and recreation.

Case Management for Homeless Persons – A Case Manager will work with individuals and families with serious mental illness who are also homeless. Services focus on identifying and accessing resources to assist with ending the individual’s homelessness.

Case Manager – Individual who organizes services for a client

CASSP – Child and Adolescent Service System Program

CBO – Congressional Budget Office

CCAP – County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania

CCDBG – Child Care and Development Block Grant (Welfare Reform Consolidation)

CCRD – Child Care Resource Developer

CCYA – County Child and Youth Agency

CDC – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Federal Agency)

Cerebral Palsy (CP) – Refers to a group of symptoms including poor muscle control, spasticity, paralysis, and other neurologic problems resulting from brain injury before, during, or shortly after birth. Symptoms range from barely noticeable clumsiness to severe spasticity and may include intellectual disability, behavioral problems, difficulty seeing or hearing properly, and seizure disorders.

CFS – Child and Family Services Review (Federal)

CHC – Community Health Center

Chickenpox – A highly contagious infection with the varicella-zoster virus that produces a characteristic itchy rash, consisting of small, raised, blistered, or crusted spots. Before the rash appears, children have a mild headache, moderate fever, loss of appetite, and a general feeling of illness.

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder – Causes apparently normal children to begin to act younger (regress) after age three. In most children, physical and mental development occurs in spurts, and it is common for children to take steps backwards.

Child Welfare – A field of social service concerned with the care and well being of children.

Child Welfare Agency – An administrative organization providing protection to children, and supportive services to children and their families.

Chronic Care – Care and treatment rendered to individuals whose health problems are of a long-term and continuing nature. Rehabilitation facilities, nursing homes, and mental hospitals may be considered chronic care facilities.

CJPT – Criminal Justice Policy Team

CLEAN – Commonwealth Law Enforcement Assistance Network

Clinical Social Worker – A mental health professional trained to provide services to individuals, families, and groups. They cannot prescribe medication.

Clinical Psychologists – Mental health professionals who have earned a doctoral degree in Psychology and have received extensive clinical training. They are trained in research, assessment, and the application of different psychological therapies.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) – A form of psychological therapy that focuses on directly modifying both cognitive processes and behavior. CBT draws heavily on cognitive theory and research, as well as more traditional techniques.

Collaborative Learning – Education environment that stresses interaction among learners and with instructors, mutual support and respect rather than competition, and the construction rather than transmission of knowledge; learners often work together in pairs or small groups on a common problem.

Communication Disorders – Can involve hearing, voice, speech, language or a combination. There are several types, including speech disorders, voice disorders, hearing impairment and specific language impairment.

Community Partnerships – Linkage and coordination of various public and private community organizations with the goal of creating a collaborative and seamless system to meet the various needs of community members.

Community Support System – An organized system of care to assist adults with long-term psychiatric disabilities to meet their needs and develop their potentials without being unnecessarily isolated or excluded from the community.

Conduct Disorder – Involves a repetitive pattern of behavior that violates the basic rights of others. Children with a conduct disorder are selfish and insensitive to the feelings of others and may bully, damage property, lie, or steal without guilt.

Consumer Recovery Center – A Drop-in Center that provides mental health consumers with opportunities to interact with peers in social, educational and recreational activities.

Content Standards – Describe the range of desirable knowledge and skills within a subject area.

Conversion Disorder – Somatoform disorder in which children may seem to have a paralyzed arm or leg, become deaf or blind, or have shaking that resembles seizures. These symptoms begin suddenly, usually after a distressing event, and may or may not resolve abruptly.

Core Services – Refers to universally available services through the CareerLink system for all individuals and employers. Core services for individuals include initial assessment, job search assistance, information about labor market, financial aid, providers, and support services. Core services for employers include orientation to CareerLink system, multiple methods to list job openings, access to resumes, job matching, and information on training providers, human resources and labor market.

CPS – Child Protective Services

CPSL – Child Protective Services Law

Croup – An inflammation of the windpipe and voice box typically caused by a contagious viral infection that causes cough, a loud squeaking noise, and sometimes difficulty while breathing in.

CSAT – Center for Substance and Abuse Treatment

CTC – Communities That Care

Cultural Competence – An awareness and acceptance of cultural differences, an awareness of one’s own cultural values, an understanding of the “dynamics of difference” in the helping process, basic knowledge about the client’s culture, and the ability to adapt practice skills to fit the client’s cultural context.

CWLA – Child Welfare League of America, Ltd.

CWT – Child Welfare Training

CWTSC – Child Welfare Training Steering Committee

CYS – Children and Youth Services

Cystic Fibrosis – A hereditary disease that causes certain glands to produce abnormal secretion, resulting in tissue and organ damage, especially in the lungs and the digestive tract. Typical symptoms include vomiting and abdominal bloating in newborns, poor weight gain, coughing, wheezing, and frequent respiratory tract infections.

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Glossary – D


D&A – Drug and Alcohol

DAP – Disability Advocacy Program

Delinquency – Violation of law by a child or youth (usually under 18).

Delusions – Bizarre thoughts that have no basis in reality.

Dementia – A problem in the brain that makes it hard for a person to remember, learn and communicate. Eventually it becomes difficult for a person to take care of himself. This disorder can also affect a person’s mood and personality.

Depression (in children) – A feeling of sadness or irritability intense enough to interfere with functioning. It may follow a recent loss or other sad event but is out of proportion to that event and persists beyond an appropriate length of time. Affected children may be sad, disinterested, and sluggish or overactive, aggressive, and irritable. Physical disorders, life experiences, and heredity can also contribute to depression in children.

Deviant Behavior – Breaking formal or informal rules or laws relative to social customs or norms, including sexual behavior.

DIS – Department of Information Services

Discharge – The formal termination of service, generally when treatment has been completed or through administrative authority.

Dislocated Workers – Workers who have lost their jobs due to layoffs or other economic transitions. One-stop services for dislocated workers include job search and job placement assistance, labor market information, career counseling, employment planning, and access to relevant training and education opportunities.

DOLETA – U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration that administers federal government job training and worker dislocation programs. Website provides extensive resources and links for workers, business and industry, and workforce professionals.

Down Syndrome – A chromosomal disorder resulting in mental retardation and physical abnormalities. Most cases are caused by an extra copy of chromosome 21. Children with Down syndrome have delayed physical and mental development, specific head and facial features, and short stature.

DPW – Department of Public Welfare

Drug and Alcohol Intervention Services – Supportive intervention services for individuals and families with substance abuse problems.

Dual Diagnosis – A diagnosis of an emotional disorder and another disorder such as developmental delay, drug and alcohol use or mental illness.

Due Process Hearing – A formal legal proceeding presided over by an impartial public official who listens to both sides of the dispute and renders a decision based upon the law.

Dyslexia – A specific reading disorder involving difficulty separating single words from groups and parts of words within each word. Affected children may be late in speaking, have articulation problems, or have difficulty blending sounds or identifying sounds in words. It is identified in more boys than girls, and tends to run in families.

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Glossary – E


EAP – Employee Assistance Program

EAPA – Employee Assistance Professionals Association

Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment Program (EPSDT) – A federally funded program to provide preventative health care to poor children ecigible for Medicaid. One of the essential purposes of the program is to ensure that eligible children are screened for potential health problems, vision, hearing, and dental problems on a regular basis so that problems can be identified and treated early.

Early Intervention (EI) – A process used to recognize warning signs for mental health problems and to take early action against factors that put individuals at risk.

EBP – Evidence Based Practices

EBT – Electronic Benefits Transfer System (Welfare Benefits via Credit Card)

EEO – Equal Employment Opportunity

Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome – A rare disorder of connective tissue that results in unusually flexible joints, very elastic skin, and fragile tissues. Typical symptoms include flexible joints, a humpback, flat feet, and elastic skin.

EIN – Employee Identification Number

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) – Highly controversial technique that uses low voltage electrical stimulation of the brain to treat some forms of major depression, acute mania and some forms of schizophrenia.

Eligibility Verification System (EVS) – Used to determine if a recipient has already selected a managed care organization.

Elimination Disorders – The essential feature of these disorders is the lack of control over bladder or bowel not caused by a physical disorder.

Emergency Crisis Services – 24-hour services that can be used at any time day or night in a crisis or emergency situation to ensure the safety and assist in resolving the crisis.

Empowerment – The ability to exercise influence and control over the services one’s child receives.

EMS – Emergency Medical Services

EMTA/Lift Transportation Program – Transportation to authorized medical or behavioral health care appointments for Health Choices eligible members who are experiencing transportation barriers.

Enhanced Personal Care Homes – Supported group living for adults with serious mental illness. Mental health treatment and supports are provided in this setting.

EOC – Employment Opportunity Centers

EOTC – Employment Opportunity and Training Centers

Equipped for the Future (EFF) – National Institute for Literacy’s initiative to develop a standards-based approach to reforming the adult literacy field and improving linkages between public and private programs that support adults.

ER – Emergency Room

ERISA – Employees Retirement Income Security Act, 1974

ESL – English as a Second Language

EVS – Eligibility Verification System

Extranet – A collaborative network that uses Internet technology to link organizations with their suppliers, customers and other organizations that share common goals or information.

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Glossary – F


Fabry’s Disease – Hereditary metabolic disorder caused by a buildup of glycolipid in tissues. This disease causes skin growths, pain in the extremities, poor vision, recurrent episodes of fever, and kidney or heart failure, and only affects males.

FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions

Family Therapy – A therapeutic method that involves assessment and treatment with all immediate family members present. This therapy places emphasis on the family as a system rather than focusing on one person who might be deemed the identified patient.

FAS – Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Fatty Acid Oxidation Disorders – Caused by a lack or deficiency of the enzymes needed to break down fats, resulting in delayed mental and physical development.

FB – Family Based

FC – Family Center

FD/FSS – Family Driver Family Support Services

FDA – Food and Drug Administration

FEMA – Federal Emergency Management Administration

FFS – Fee For Service

FGDM – Family Group Decision Making

Fluency – The ability to use a skill with speed and ease.

FOC – Family Outreach Center

Forensic Case Management – A Case Manager who will work with adults with serious mental illness who are also involved in the criminal justice system. Service provides identification, referral and linkage to community resources for mental health and substance abuse problems.

Foster Care – Care provided for children whose families are temporarily unable to care for them. The local government determines the process of arranging foster care. While the foster parent assumes day-to-day care for the child, the birth parents usually remain the child’s legal guardians, allowing them to make legal decisions for the child.

FPIG – Federal Poverty Income Guideline

FSIQ – Full Scale I.Q. Test

FSP – Family Support Plan/Family Service Plan

FSS – Family Support Systems

Functional Family Therapy – Intensive in-home family treatment for youth ages 10 to 18 who have significant conduct, behavior, or substance abuse problems.

FY – Fiscal Year

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Glossary – G


GAD – Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Gatekeeper – Primary care physician or local agency responsible for coordinating and managing health care needs of members.

GED – General Education Development

Generalized Anxiety Disorder – Involves excessive, persistent nervousness, worry, and dread about many activities or events. Children’s worries are general and encompass many things and activities, and stress tends to worsen the anxiety.

GME – Graduate Medical Education

GP – General Practitioner

GPS – General Protection Services

Group Therapy – Involves groups of 4 to 12 people who have similar problems and who meet regularly with a therapist. The therapist uses the emotional interactions of the group’s members to help them get relief from distress and possibly modify their behavior.

GS – Gifted Support

GTC – General Terms and Conditions

Guidance Counselor – An individual working in a school who is trained to do screening, evaluations, and career and academic advising.

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Glossary – H


Hallucinations – Experiences of sensations that have no source.

HC – HealthChoices

HCBS – Home and Community Based Services

HCCU – Health Care Coordinating Unit

Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) – A prepaid organization that provides health care to voluntary enrolled members in return for a preset amount of money on a per member per month basis. They include a mental health plan that places at least some of the providers at risk for medical expenses, and use gatekeepers, usually primary care physicians, to restrict services.

HEDIS – Health Employer Data and Information Set

HHS – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

High Fidelity Wraparound – Intensive mental health planning and coordination for youth under 21 years of age that have problems in multiple domains of living and are involved with multiple child-serving systems.

HIO – Health Insuring Organization

HIPAA – Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act

HIPP – Health Insurance Premium Payment

HIS – Hearing Impaired Support

Hospital-Based Detoxification and/or Rehabilitation – Treatment and care for drug and alcohol abuse delivered in a hospital setting. This service is used when an individual’s problem cannot be treated outside the hospital.

HR – House Resolution or Human Resources

HSA – Health Systems Agency

HUD (U.S. Housing and Urban Development) – A federal agency responsible for housing programs and Section 8 housing. A program of vouchers for housing for the disabled.

HX – History

Hypochondriasis – Somatoform disorder in which children have no specific, ongoing symptoms but are obsessed with bodily functions, such as heartbeat, digestion and sweating, and are convinced that they have a serious disease when nothing is wrong. They may also feel anxious and depressed.

Hypomania – An episode in which the individual experiences a mild form of mania. Such an episode does not markedly impair an individual’s social and vocational functions, and does not necessarily indicate the presence of bipolar disorder.

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Glossary – I


ICAN – Involved Consumer Action Network in Pennsylvania

ICF – Intermediate Care Facility (AAA Program)

ICM – Intensive Case Management

ICSP – Integrated Children Service Planning

ICU – Intensive Care Unit

ICWA – Indian Child Welfare Act (Federal)

ID – Insurance Department

IFA – Individual Function Assessment

IFSP – Individualized Family Service Plan (Early Intervention)

ILC – Independent Living Center

ILP – Independent Living Program

IMD – Institutions for Mental Disease

Inclusion – An educational option for students with disabilities to be educated in a regular classroom in their neighborhood school with all necessary supports provided so that the student can participate fully.

Independent Living Services – Support for a young person living on his or her own. Services teach youth how to handle financial, medical, housing, transportation, and other daily living needs, as well as how to get along with others.

Individualized Education Plan (IEP) – Written education plan for individual learners including action plan, goals and objectives, and timetable. Usually developed jointly by educators, counselors, and learners. Individualized employment plans will be available through the CareerLink system to enable individuals to plan a career path.

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) – The 1997 Act, signed into law by President Clinton, aims to strengthen academic expectations and accountability for the nation’s 5.4 million children with disabilities, and bridge the gap that has too often existed between what those children learn and the regular curriculum.

Inpatient – A person who has been admitted at least overnight to a hospital or other health care facility, which is therefore responsible for his room and board, for the propose of receiving diagnostic treatment of other health services.

Intake, Assessment and Service Planning – Comprehensive assessment and referral services for individuals experiencing serious mental health problems.

Intellectual Disability – Significantly sub average intellectual functioning present from birth or early infancy, causing limitations in the ability to conduct normal activities of daily living. Intellectual Disabilities can be genetic or the result of a disorder that interferes with brain development.

Intensive Outpatient Drug and Alcohol Services – Intensive individual, group, or family counseling delivered by a therapist who works on the identified substance abuse concerns. Treatment ranges from 6 to 10 hours weekly.

Intensive services – Refers to services available through the CareerLink system for individuals and employers. Intensive services are available to adults and dislocated workers who are unemployed or underemployed and include comprehensive assessment, individual employment/education plan, group counseling, individual career planning, and case management.

IOC – Involuntary Outpatient Commitment

IP – Inpatient

ISP – Individualized Service Plan

ITP – Individual Treatment Plan (MGH/MR Plan)

IU – Intermediate Unit (Department of Education)

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Glossary – J


Jacobi’s Disease – Any of several disorders characterized by patchy discoloration of the skin

Jaundice – A condition in which the skin and the whites of the eyes become yellow, urine darkens, and the color of stool becomes lighter than normal. Jaundice occurs when the liver is not working properly or when a bile duct is blocked

JCA – Juvenile Court Act

JD – Juvenile Delinquent

JDC – Juvenile Detention Center

JDCAP – Juvenile Detention Centers Association of Pennsylvania

Jigsaw Classroom – A cooperative group-learning technique designed to reduce prejudice and raise self-esteem

JJ – Juvenile Justice

JJDPA – Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act

JOBS – Job Opportunities and Basic Skills

JPO – Juvenile Probation Officer

JTPA – Job Training and Partnership Act

Judge – Determines adjudications of dependency and delinquency and determines dispositions

Jurisdiction – A legal term referring to the authority or power that a court will have over the individuals or the subject matter of the cases that will appear before it for consideration or decision.

Juvenile – A person 13 to 18 years of age

Juvenile Act – State legislation that dictates the rules and regulations of Juvenile Court

JWB – Juvenile Welfare Board

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Glossary – K


Kangaroo Court – Slang for a court that operates unjustly or with unfair bias

Kashin-Beck Disease – A disorder of the bones and joints of the hands and fingers, elbows, knees, and ankles of children and adolescents who slowly develop stiff deformed joints, shortened limb length and short stature due to necrosis (death) of the growth plates of bones and of joint cartilage.

Kidnapping – taking a person away by means of fear, force, or fraud.

Kindred – An individual’s extended bilateral network or relatives traced through both parents and their kin of either sex.

Kinship – A relationship between any entities that share a genealogical origin, through either biological, cultural, or historical descent.

Kinship Care – The full time care, nurturing, and protection of children by relatives, godparents, stepparents, or any adult who has a kinship bond with a child.

Kleine-Levin Syndrome – A rare condition characterized by excessive need for sleep, food, and sexual disinhibition. Most people with Kleine-Levin syndrome are adolescent males.

Klinefelter’s Syndrome – A disorder in which male infants are born with an extra X chromosome (XXY). Children may have learning disabilities, long arms and legs, small testes, and infertility.

Kleptomania – A rare impulse-control disorder in which individuals feel a persistent urge to steal and a sense of tension that is relieved only by theft. Contrary to popular belief, kleptomaniacs do not steal for personal or financial gain but rather for the tension release or rush of the act.

Know-How – A particular kind of technical knowledge that may not be confidential but that is needed to accomplish a task

Kyphosis – An abnormal curving of the spine that causes a humpback. Some amount of Kyphosis is common and begins in adolescence, affecting boys more often than girls. The causer is unknown but it sometimes runs in families.

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Glossary – L


Learning Disorders – Involve an inability to acquire, retain, or broadly use specific skills or information, resulting from deficiencies in attention, memory, or reasoning and affecting academic performance. One specific learning disorder is Dyslexia.

LCE – Liquor Control Enforcement

LCSW – Licensed Clinical Social Worker

LEA – Local Educational Agency or Law Enforcement Agency

Legal Advocacy – Legal services provided to ensure the protection and maintenance of a client’s/patient’s rights.

Licensed Certified Social Worker (LCSW) – Some states require social workers to be licensed, while certification and registration, whether offered by the state or by a professional organization, is usually voluntary. Holding a license generally requires the licensee to adhere to a code of ethics of professional conduct. If this code is violated, the license can be revoked or other disciplinary actions taken.

LIHEAP – Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program

LOC – Level of Care

LOCI – Level of Care Index

LOF – Level of Functioning

LOS – Length of Stay

LPN – Licensed Practical Nurse

LS – Learning Support

LSS – Life Skills Support

LSW – Licensed Social Worker

LTC – Long Term Care

LTCF – Long Term Care Facility

LTRC – Long Term Residential Care

LTSR – Long Term Structured Residence

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Glossary – M


MA – Medical Assistance

MADD – Mothers Against Drunk Driving

MAID – Medical Assistance Identification Number

Mainstreaming – Placement of a child with a disability in the regular classroom for part of the school day.

MAMIS – Medical Assistance Management Information System

Managed Care – A method of financing and delivering health care for a set fee using a network of physicians and other health care providers who have agreed to the set fees.

Managed Care Organization (MCO) – A health care plan designed to provide medical services through groups of doctors, hospitals and security providers.

Mania – A symptom of bipolar disorder characterized by exaggerated excitement, physical overactivity, and profuse and rapidly changing ideas. A person in a manic stage feels an emotional high and generally follows their impulses.

MATP – Medical Assistance Transportation Program

MBD – Minimal Brain Dysfunction

MCIS – Managed Care Information System

MCO – Managed Care Organization

MDD – Major Depressive Disorder

Mental Illness – General term applies to severe emotional problems or psychiatric disorders.

Measles – A high contagious viral infection that provides various symptoms and a characteristic rash. Symptoms include fever, runny nose, hacking cough, red eyes, and a red itchy rash.

Medicaid – A federally aided, state-operated and administered program that provides medical benefits for certain indigent or low-income persons in need of health and medical care. Subject to broad federal guidelines, states determine the benefits covered, program eligibility, rates of payment for providers, and methods of administering the program.

Medical Assistance (MA) – A government program that pays medical costs for very low-income people.

Medicare – A U.S. health insurance program for people aged 65 and older, for persons eligible for social security disability payments for two years or longer, and for certain workers and their dependents who need kidney transplantation and dialysis. Medicare has two basic coverages: Part A, which pays for hospitalization costs, and Part B, which pays for physician services, lab and x-ray services, durable medical equipment, and outpatient and other services.

Medigap Policy – A private health insurance policy offered to Medicare beneficiaries to cover expenses not paid by Medicare. Medigap policies are strictly regulated by federal rules.

Meningitis – Infection of the layers of tissue covering the brain and spinal cord. It usually results from a bacterial infection in the bloodstream.

MH – Mental Health

MH/ID Prescriptions – Short term gap funding for mental health prescriptions for adults with serious mental illness who meet specific clinical and financial eligibility guidelines.

MH/ID – Mental Health/Intellectual Disability

MHA – Mental Health Association

MHAP – Mental Health Association of Pennsylvania

MHASP – Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania

MHI – Mental Health Inventory

MHP – Mental Health Plan

MI – Mentally Ill

MI/DD – Mentally Ill/Developmentally Disabled

MI-A – Mentally Ill Adult

MI-C – Mentally Ill Child

MISA – Mental Illness/Substance Abuse

Mobile Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services – Community based services delivered to adults with serious mental health problems to build skill levels and provide environmental supports.

Mobile Treatment Team – Provides assertive outreach, crisis intervention, and independent living assistance with linkage to necessary support services in the client’s own environment.

MOE – Method of Evaluation

Morbidity – The extent of illness, injury, or disability in a defined population. It is usually expressed in general or specific rates of incidence or prevalence.

MPD – Multiple Personality Disorder

MST – Multi Systemic Therapy

MSW – Master of Social Work

Multi-Dimensional Treatment Foster Care – Mental health treatment provided to delinquent youth ages 12 through 17 who reside in specialized foster care.

Multi-Systemic Therapy – Intensive in-home family treatment for youth ages 10 to 18 who have significant conduct, behavior, or substance abuse problems.

Mumps – A contagious viral infection that causes painful enlargement of the salivary glands. The infection may also affect the testes, brain, and pancreas, especially in adults. Symptoms include chills, headache, poor appetite, fever, and a feeling of illness, followed by swelling of the salivary glands.

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Glossary – N


NA – Narcotics Anonymous

NAADAC – National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors

NAATP – National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers

NACOA – National Association for Children of Alcoholics

NADCP – National Association of Drug Court Professionals

NAMI – National Alliance on Mental Illness

NARPA – National Association for Rights Protection and Advocacy

NARSAD – National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Affective Disorders

NASMHPD – National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors

NCADD – National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc.

NCANDS – National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System

NCIC – National Crime Information Center

NCLB – No Child Left Behind

NCQA – National Committee for Quality Assurance

NDC – National Drug Code

NEC – National Empowerment Center

Neurologist – A physician specializing in diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the nervous system.

NFP – Not for Profit

NICU – Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

NIDA – National Institute on Drug Abuse

NIH – National Institutes of Health

NIMH – National Institute of Mental Health

NMHA – National Mental Health Association

Non-Hospital Based Detoxification and/or Rehabilitation and Halfway House Services – Treatment and care to help individuals stop using drugs and alcohol. Services are delivered in a licensed facility where the individual resides while receiving treatment.

NOS – Not Otherwise Specified

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Glossary – O


Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) – Characterized by recurring, unwanted, intrusive ideas, images, or impulses and unrelenting urges to act on the impulses. The obsessions and compulsions cause great distress and interfere with school and relationships. Children with OCD often worry or fear that they or loved ones will be harmed and feel compelled to do something to neutralize their fear.

OCYF – Office of Children, Youth and Families

ODAP – Office of Drug and Alcohol Programs

ODP – Office of Developmental Programs

OIS – Office of Information Systems

OMA – Office of Medical Assistance

OMAP – Office of Medical Assistance Programs

OMB – Office of Management and Budget

OMH – Office of Mental Health

OMHC – Outpatient Mental Health Center

OMHSAS – Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services

ONDCP – Office of National Drug Control Policy

OP – Outpatient Services

Oppositional Defiant Disorder – A recurring pattern of negative, defiant, and disobedient behavior, often directed at authority figures. Children with oppositional defiant disorder are stubborn, difficult, and disobedient without being physically aggressive or actually violating the rights of others.

ORC – Other Related Conditions

Osgood-Schlatter Disease – Inflammation of the bone and cartilage at the top of the shinbone (tibia). The cause is thought to be repetitive, excessive pulling by the tendon of the kneecap on its point of attachment at the top of the shinbone. The major symptoms are pain, swelling, and tenderness in the area.

OSHA – Occupational Safety and Health Administration

OSP – Office of Social Programs

Osteopetroses – A group of rare disorders that increase the density of bones, occurring when the body does not recycle old bone cells. Typical symptoms include impaired bone growth and thick bones that easily break.

OTC – Over The Counter

OTN – Offense Tracking Number

OTR – Occupational Therapist (Registered)

Outpatient – A patient who is receiving ambulatory care at a hospital or other facility without being admitted to the facility.

OVR – Office of Vocational Rehabilitation

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Glossary – P


PADUIA – Pennsylvania Driving Under the Influence Association

PAC – Political Action Committee

PACDAA – Pennsylvania Association of County Drug and Alcohol Administrators

PACHIP – Pennsylvania Children’s Health Insurance Program

PACSHA – Pennsylvania Association of County Human Services Administrators

PACT – Program for Assertive Community Treatment

PADOHRIC – Pennsylvania Department of Health Research and Information Center

PAE – Pennsylvania Adoption Exchange

Panda – Prevent Abuse and Neglect Through Dental Awareness

Panic Disorder – Characterized by panic attacks that occur at least once a week. A panic attack is a brief (5 to 20 minute) episode of intense anxiety that is usually accompanied by physical symptoms, such as rapid heart beat, sweating, chest pain and nausea. Panic attacks can occur in any anxiety disorder, usually in response to the focus of that disorder.

PAPSRS – Pennsylvania Association of Psychological Rehabilitation Services

PARF – Pennsylvania Association of Rehabilitation Facilities

PASAP – Pennsylvania Association of Student Assistance

Pastoral Counseling – Counselors working within traditional faith communities to incorporate psychotherapy, and/or medication, with prayer and spirituality to effectively help some people with mental disorders.

PATH – Projects for Assistance in Transition From Homelessness

PCBH – Personal Care Boarding Home

PCCD – Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency

PCCM – Primary Care Case Manager

PCCYFS – Pennsylvania Commission of Children, Youth and Family Services

PCH – Personal Care Homes

PDA – Pennsylvania Department of Aging

PDDC – Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Coalition

PDE – Pennsylvania Department of Education

Peer Specialist Services – Specialized services which focus on recovery and are delivered by trained individuals who are self-identified as current or former consumers of behavioral health services.

PEN – Parent Education Network

PEPS – Program Evaluation Performance Standards

PERP – Perpetrator of Child Abuse or Child Sexual Abuse

Pertussis (Whooping Cough) – A highly contagious infection caused by the bacterium Bordetella Pertussis, which results in fits of coughing that usually end in a prolonged, high-pitched, deeply indrawn breath (the whoop). People can develop Pertussis at any age, but one third of causes occur in children younger than two years, and one third occur in adolescents 11 to 18 years of age.

PFAD – Protection From Abuse Database

PFAPA Syndrome (periodic fevers with aphthous stomatitis, pharyngitis, and adenitis) – Causes recurrent episodes of fever that last 3 to 6 days, mouth sores (stomatitis), a sore throat (pharyngitis), and swollen lymph glands (adenitis). It typically starts between ages 2 and 5 years, and children typically tend to outgrow the syndrome.

Phobic Disorders – Disorders that cause extreme and irrational anxiety when encountering particular situations, objects or activities.

PHLP – Pennsylvania Health Law Project

PH-MCO – Physical Health Managed Care Organization

PHP – Prepaid Health Plan (Managed Care)

PI – Physical Intervention

PIN – Parents Involved Network

PIP – Program Improvement Plan

Play Therapy – Geared toward young children, play therapy uses a variety of activities such as painting, puppets and dioramas to establish communication with the therapist and resolve problems.

PLCB – Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board

PLF – Private Licensed Facility

PHMCA – Pennsylvania Mental Health Consumers Association

PMPM – Per Member Per Month

PMU – Psychiatric Medical Unit

PNP – Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

POA – Power of Attorney

POC – Plan of Care

POS – Point of Service (Managed Care Term)

POSNET – Pennsylvania Open Systems Network

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) – Causes recurring, intrusive memories of an overwhelming traumatic event as well as emotional numbness and increased tension of alertness. The disorder may develop after children witness or experience an act of violence, causing them to re-experience the event, causing them to feel emotionally numb, extremely tense, and jittery.

Primary Care Provider (PCP) – Generally coordinates, supervises, and provides mental care to members of a plan. May include a family practitioner, general internist, pediatrician, and sometimes an ob/gyn.

PRN – “When Necessary”: Used in the administration of medication

Program quality indicator – Program characteristics or practices that provide evidence of the ability of the adult education program to deliver services, to satisfy customer (learner or employer) needs and aspirations, to continuously improve, and to be accountable.

PRS – Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services

PRTF – Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility

PSFPA – Pennsylvania State Foster Parent Association

PSP – Pennsylvania State Police

Psychiatric Nurses – Core mental health professionals who have earned a Masters degree in Psychiatric Nursing and typically have extensive training in psychopharmacology and counseling.

Psychiatric Social Worker – Social worker specializing in work with psychiatric patients and their families.

Psychoanalyst – A person who diagnoses and treats emotional disorders through special techniques that explore a patient’s mental and emotional history and makeup.

Psychosis – A general term used to describe any of several mental disorders characterized by social withdrawal, distortions of reality, loss of contact with environment and disintegration of personality.

PT – Physical Therapy or Physical Therapist

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Glossary – Q


QA – Quality Assessment

QHP – Qualified Health Plan

QI – Quality Improvement

QM – Quality Management

QUAC – Quality Assurance Committee (Child Welfare Training)

Quality Assurance – An approach to improving the quality and appropriateness of medical care and other services

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Glossary – R


RA – Risk Assessment

Rape Crisis and Victim Witness Services – Confidential counseling and support services for adults and children who are victims of sexual violence or violent crimes.

RCF – Residential Care Facility

Residential Services – Care given in a residential crisis bed, a respite bed, a therapeutic group home, a group home, or residential rehabilitation program.

Residential Treatment Facility Services – Treatment and care for individuals under 21 years of age with serious mental health problems. The individual resides in a licensed mental health facility with 24-hour supervision while receiving treatment.

Residential Treatment Facility Services for Adults – Treatment and care for adults with serious mental illness. Services are delivered in a licensed facility where the individual resides while receiving treatment.

Respite Services – Temporary care given to an individual for the purpose of providing a period of relief to the primary caregivers. Respite is used to decrease stress in the homes of persons with disabilities of handicaps, thereby increasing caregivers’ overall effectiveness.

Retinoblastoma – A cancer of the retina, the light-sensing area at the back of the eye. It is the result of a genetic mutation, and the child may have a white pupil, cross-eyes, or occasional vision problems.

Retropharyngeal Abscess – A collection of pus in the lymph nodes at the back of the throat. It is caused by a bacterial infection and is more common among children than among adults.

Rett Syndrome – A rare genetic disorder occurring almost only in girls that causes impaired social interactions, loss of language skills, and repetitive hand motions.

RFF – Request for Funding

RFI – Request for Information

RFP – Request for Proposal

RFPC – Regional Forensic Psychiatric Center

RMHA – Responsible Mental Health Authority

RN – Registered Nurse

RTC – Regional Training Center

RTF – Residential Treatment Facility

RX – Prescription

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Glossary – S


SA – Substance Abuse/Safety Assessment

SADD – Students Against Destructive Decisions

SAMSHA – Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

SAP – Student Assistance Program

SCA – Single County Authority on Drug and Alcohol

SCAN – Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect

Schizophrenia (Childhood) – A chronic disorder involving abnormal thought, perception, and social behavior. Adolescents withdraw, start having unusual emotions, and usually have hallucinations, delusions, and paranoia.

SCOH – Service to Children in Their Own Home

Scoliosis – Abnormal curvature of the spine. Mild forms might cause only mild discomfort, but more severe forms can cause chronic pain or affect internal organs.

SD – Self-Determination

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) – A form of depression that appears related to fluctuations in the exposure to natural light. It usually strikes during autumn and often continues through the winter when natural light is reduced.

SED – Socially and Emotionally Disturbed (Education Term)

SED – Seriously Emotionally Disturbed (Mental Health Term)

SEP – Supported Employment Program

Separation Anxiety Disorder – Involves persistent, intense anxiety about being away from home or being separated from people to whom a child is attached, usually the mother. Most children feel some separation anxiety, but usually grow out of it.

Sever’s Disease – Inflammation of the heel bone, usually developed by a child (age 9 to 14) who is athletically active. Pain affects the sides or margins of the heel and is aggravated by standing on tip toes or running.

Shelter Plus Care – Support services and rental subsidies provided to eligible adults with serious mental illness or substance abuse problems that are also homeless. Services focus specifically on assistance with housing needs.

Shelter Services – Case management services that are available in identified shelters to provide identification, information and referral to appropriate community resources for individuals and families with substance abuse problems.

SHP – Student Housing Program

SID – State Identification Number (Police Information)

SILC – State Independent Living Council

Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) – A nursing care facility participating in the Medicaid and Medicare programs which meets specified requirements for services, staffing and safety.

Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis (SCFE) – A separation within the thighbone at its growth plate in the hip joint. It usually develops in overweight adolescents, most commonly in boys.

SLP – Supported Living Program or Speech Language Pathologist

SMH – State Mental Hospital

SMI – Serious Mental Illness

SMM – State Medicaid Manual

SNF – Skilled Nursing Facility

SNU – Special Needs Unit

SOC – Systems of Care

Social Maladjustment – Extreme difficulty dealing appropriately with other people.

Social Phobia (Social Anxiety Disorder) – Involves a persistent fear of being embarrassed, ridiculed, or humiliated in social situations. Sometimes social phobias occur after an embarrassing incident, and this disorder is usually first noticed when children or adolescents refuse to go to school.

Social Rehabilitation Services – Counseling and support services for identified youth with emotional and/or behavioral concerns. Services focus on skill building and problem resolution.

Sociopath – A term sometimes used to describe persons with extreme disregard for and hostility toward society.

Somatization Disorder – Children develop numerous vague symptoms, such as headaches, abdominal pain, and nausea. Any part of the body may be affected, and these symptoms may come and go for long periods of time.

Somatoform Disorders (in children) – Underlying psychological problems cause distressing or disabling physical symptoms. Symptoms may resemble those of a neurologic disorder (such as paralysis or loss of vision) or be vague (such as headache and nausea), or children may be obsessed with an imagined defect or be convinced that they have a serious disease. There are several types, including conversion disorder, somatization disorder, body dysmorphic disorder and hypochondriasis.

SOS – Survivors of Suicide (Support Group)

Specialized Shelter Services – Temporary residential services for adults with serious mental illness who are also homeless.

SPR – Systems Performance Review

SSA – U.S. Social Security Administration

SSBG – Social Services Block Grant (Title IX)

SSD – Social Security Disability

SSDI – Social Security Disability Insurance

SSI – Supplemental Security Income (Income for Disabled Children or Adults)

SSN – Social Security Number

ST – Speech Therapist or Speech Therapy

Status Offense – Non-criminal behavior of a child such as running away, truancy, and curfew violation, that can result in juvenile action.

STD – Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Student Assistance Program (Mental Health) – Screening, assessment, intervention, and referral services provided to students in the school setting who may be experiencing problems which impact on their school attendance and performance.

Student Assistance Program (Substance Abuse) – Screening, assessment, intervention, and referral services to community services for identified youth with substance abuse problems. Services are delivered in the school setting.

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) – The sudden, unexpected death of a seemingly healthy infant during sleep, in whom a thorough postmortem examination does not show a cause. Putting infants to sleep on their back, removing pillows, bumper guards, and toys from the crib, protecting infants from overheating, and preventing infants from breathing second-hand cigarette smoke may help prevent SIDS.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) – A disability program of the SSA. A person must be considered medically disabled, have little or no income or resources to be eligible.

Support Funding for Youth and Adults – Limited flexible funds for individuals experiencing significant mental health problems. Funds are used for supportive housing and social rehabilitation services.

Supported Living (SL) – Initiative designed to increase housing options available to persons with serious mental illnesses.

SWAN – Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network

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Glossary – T


TASC – Treatment Alternatives to Street Crime

TBI – Traumatic Brain Injury

TC – Therapeutic Community

TCM – Targeted Case Management

TCU – Transitional Care Unit

TDD – Telecommunication Device for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) – Federal welfare funding created by the Welfare Reform Law of 1996 consisting of block grants to states providing them with greater flexibility in designing programs to help low-income parents move into employment, retain jobs and move toward self-sufficiency.

Tic Disorders – Repeated involuntary movements that are fundamentally purposeless. Tics sometimes occur with other disorders such as OCD or result from certain infection or certain drugs, especially drugs used to treat ADHD.

Tourette’s Syndrome – A neurological disorder characterized by involuntary muscular movements, uncontrollable vocal sounds, and inappropriate words.

Train-the-trainer courses – Training courses that teach nontraditional training staff members such as managers, subject matter experts, and team leader skills such as instructional design and group facilitation to enable them to deliver formal training to other establishment employees.

TSS – Therapeutic Social Services

TTY – Text Telephone Typewriter

TX – Treatment

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Glossary – U


UM – Utilization Management

UPIN – Unique Physician Identification Number

UR – Utilization Review

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) – A bacterial infection of the urinary bladder or the kidneys. They are most common in childhood, and are almost always caused by bacteria that enter the urethral opening and move upward to the urinary bladder and sometimes the kidneys.

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Glossary – V


VA – Veterans Administration

VNA – Visiting Nurse Association

VOC REHAB – Vocational Rehabilitation

VOCA – Victims of Crime Act, 1984

Vocational Rehabilitation Services – Services that include job finding/development, assessment and enhancement of work-related skills, attitudes, and behaviors as well as provision of job experience to clients.

Von Hippel-Lindau Disease – A rare hereditary disorder that causes tumors to develop in several organs. Children may have headaches, impaired vision, or high blood pressure and feel dizzy or weak.

VSAC – Victims Services Advisory Committee

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Glossary – W


WBE – Women’s Business Enterprise

WHO – World Health Organization

WIC – Women, Infants and Children (Food Supplement Program)

Withdrawing Behavior – Behavior characterized by reduced interest in or contact with other people, and can include absence of speech, regression to babyhood, exhibition of many fears, depression and refusing contacts with other people.

WRAP – Wellness Recovery Action Plan

Wraparound Services – The coordination of delivery of services to children and their families that is individually tailored to each case with the goal of keeping the family together in the community and being included in normalized school settings.

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Glossary – X


XYY Syndrome – A disorder in which a male infant is born with an extra Y chromosome. Boys with XYY Syndrome tend to be tall and have difficulties with language.

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Glossary – Y


YDC – Youth Development Camp

YMCA – Young Men’s Christian Association

YSAP – Youth Service Alliance of Pennsylvania

YWCA – Young Women’s Christian Association

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Glossary – Z


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