Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS SB)

We are happy to be part of the countywide implementation of a standardized assessment tool so that we all can work towards meeting the needs of children, youth and families through a strength-based needs-driven approach.

The Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) Comprehensive Assessment is being used throughout the United States by many different organizations and individuals.

  • The CANS, developed by John S. Lyons, PhD, was modified for use by the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health.
  • The CANS is a document that organizes clinical information collected during a behavioral health assessment in a consistent manner to improve communication among those involved in planning care for a child or adolescent.
  • The CANS is also used as a decision-support tool to guide care planning and to track changing strengths and needs over time.
  • The CANS has three primary uses—as a decision support tool, as a quality improvement tool and as an outcome monitoring tool.
  • As an assessment tool, the CANS can be used by child and family teams to develop a plan of care.
  • As a quality improvement tool, the CANS can be used with the Treatment Fidelity Index to determine if the strengths and needs identified are incorporated into the plan of care.
  • As an outcome monitoring tool, the CANS may be used by the larger systems of care to track aggregate improvement by children and families on the entire tool or on a particular domain of the tool.

DHCS Requirement to Use PSC-35

The PSC-35 is a psycho social screening tool designed to facilitate the recognition of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral problems so appropriate interventions can be initiated as early as possible. Parents/caregivers will complete PSC-35 (parent/caregiver version) for children and youth ages 3 to 18.  PSC-35 data will be entered by providers into the established Objective Arts website. Language translations of the PSC-35 created for DHCS can be found at the Massachusetts General website (use the link found in the Helpful Links section to the right). DBH contracted providers must only use the translated documents marked with an asterisk (*) indicating the translation was created for DHCS.


Clinical Staff Pathway

  • Step 1: CANS/ANSA Certification
    In order to attend TCOM training, you must first complete an online CANS or ANSA certification course and pass the course certification exam with the Praed Foundation at When you are ready to take the online CANS or ANSA certification exam, please send an email to the Workforce Education & Training general mailbox at requesting a TCOM coupon code.  This code will allow you to bypass the fee normally charged by the vendor for the course.  It will arrive with instructions on its use and accessing the correct course material.  If you have not completed this step within 24 hours of your TCOM training, you will be unenrolled from the session.
  • Step 2: TCOM Training
    Attend a monthly TCOM training led by DBH staff.  Register via Relias
  • Step 3: Objective Arts Basic Training
    Option 1:  Attend a monthly Objective Arts Basic training led by DBH staff.  Register via Relias
    Option 2: Work with your Objective Arts Subject Matter Expert to complete the practice activity provided within one week of attending TCOM training.

Support Staff
Attend a monthly Objective Arts Basic training led by DBH staff.  Register via Relias.

CANS-SB Clinical FAQs


CANS related issues: DBH-OA
OA issues (for agency SMEs only): DBH-OA

Please contact your Objective Arts Subject Matter Expert (SME) for assistance first.

Relias Login:
Training and certification questions: or call 1-800-722-9866