CAPS, CANS and FAST Training

The Comprehensive Assessment and Planning System (CAPS)

The CAPS is a systematic approach to the assessment of children and their families that are receiving child welfare services through the Bureau for Social Services (BSS). The CAPS is used to meet the treatment planning requirements of the West Virginia Code §49-5D-3 that states "The department shall adopt a standard uniform comprehensive assessment instrument or protocol to be used by treatment teams."

The CAPS course is offered to assist potention providers of the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (WV DHHR) with the opportunity to learn more about the Comprehensive Assessment and Planning System. This course will give a brif overview of the system's process, it's purpose, and the population served. It will also provide the legal basis, as well as the practices and procedures necessary in the assessment and planning process. 

          To register for training:

          •WV DHHR workers who meed the CAPS training can register themselves in the Blackboard system.  

          •Agencies and providers register by emailing Mary Thompson at with the name(s) and email address(es) of the individual(s). She will contact the DHHR Employee Development Technical Support Unit, who will email a link and instructions to those individual(s).

Comprehensive Assessment and Planning System (CANS)

The CANS is designed for use at two levels:the individual child and family and for the system of care. The CANS provides structured assessment of children along a set of dimensions relevant to service planning and decision making. In addition, the CANS will provide information regarding the child and family's services needs for use during system planning and/or quality assurance monitoring.

          •Click here for an overview of CANS.

          •The CANS tool is also supported by the Praed Foundation.

Family Advocacy Support Tool (FAST)

The FAST is a communcaiton tool designed to understand the complex needs of families. The FAST focuses on the entire family and identifies each member's unique needs and potential strengths. The purpose of the FAST is to identify safety threats and treatment needs which may exist within families, and support families in meeting neds and reducing safety threats and support effect interventions. The FAST tool is designed to be continuously modified based on new infomraiton learned throughout the life of the case. The FAST should be revisited and updated regularly as other assessments are completed and to reflect the current status of the case.

          To register for the CANS or FAST training:

          •Both trainings are provided by Marshall University to WV DHHR employees, agencies and providers, and those attending Marshall University classes.

          •Trainings can be done in person or virtually. Marshall University also will provider train-the-trainer sessions twice a year.  In order to keep West Virginia up-to-date and to address training issues, recordings are available by clicking on the links below. Marshall University will keep the most up-to-date resources related to CANS and FAST trainings. 

          •Please click the following link for more informationor to register for training:

Questions or Concerns contact: