In qualitative child welfare case reviews, trained reviewers conduct detailed interviews of each person involved with a small sample of cases; this may include the caseworker, child and family, foster parent, attorneys, and service providers. Using a structured protocol to guide their inquiry, reviewers determine the current status or outcome for the child as well as assess the quality of practice that contributed to that outcome. This section contains resources describing the general process of qualitative case review and includes State and local examples that describe their review processes as well as the resulting recommendations for systems improvement.
Peer Quality Case Review (PQCR)
California Social Work Education Center
Provides background information, planning tools, instructions, and training materials to help California counties prepare for this review process. The site also includes tips for analyzing the review information and completing reports.
Supervisory Case Reviews: Tools to Monitor and Improve Practice [Webcast]
National Child Welfare Resource Center for Organizational Improvement (2007)
Features the work of two States that include structured case reviews between supervisors and caseworkers as part of their quality improvement systems. These reviews are focused on agency outcomes and desired practices.
Continuous Quality Improvement Quality Service Review: Final Report (PDF - 462 KB)
Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare, Wisconsin Department of Children and Families, Child Welfare Policy and Practice Group (Ala.) (2008)
Describes the qualitative case review process adopted by Wisconsin, using a structured protocol to conduct detailed interviews. Each report includes recommendations as well as practice strengths and challenges identified in the interviews.
Quality Improvement Practices and Tools
Minnesota Department of Human Services (2009)
Provides links to tools that can be used in day-to-day supervision and quality improvement, including tools used in preparation for and during the Minnesota Child and Family Service Review process, Program Improvement Plan development, and more.
Report of Peer Quality Case Review Conducted for Child Welfare Services and Probation in Humboldt County: On-Site Peer Quality Case Review Dates: January 16, 2006 to January 19, 2006 (PDF - 171 KB)
California, Humboldt County, Department of Health and Human Services (2006)
Describes a review process designed to examine social worker practice with a focus on relative/extended family placements related to reunification. The report identifies promising practices, barriers and challenges, and recommendations.
Strengthening Service Plan Reviews: A Practice Paper (Including, Crosswalk of New York State Policy Regarding Service Plan Reviews)
New York State Office of Children and Family Services (2004)
Reviews the Service Plan Review (SPR) process as it is implemented in New York, identifies several innovative SPR practices underway, and recommends strategies for strengthening SPR meetings.
Western Region Report, Qualitative Case Review Findings, Review Conducted October 2-6, 2006: A Joint Report by the Child Welfare Policy and Practice Group and Office of Services Review, Department of Human Services [State of Utah] (PDF - 176 KB)
Utah's Division of Child and Family Services (2007)
Outlines the process and discusses the outcomes of a case practice review of 24 randomly selected child welfare cases in Utah. The report assesses performance of the State in achieving practice consistent with the practice principles and practice standards expressed in the State's Performance Milestone Plan.