The TRAQ is meant to be used over time, iteratively, perhaps every 6 months, to monitor
the progress of youth in their development of self-management skills. The key is
to engage the youth, using a motivational interviewing approach to have them select
and work on the goals that interest or motivate them. Once they engage and see the
value of working on these skills (and their parents recognize the value as well),
often their progress in adopting and mastering the skills follows. We believe that
setting goals and working on the skills measured in the TRAQ generalize to other skills
as well, meaning that if the youth acquires skills in one area (e.g., filling a prescription),
they are more likely to also acquire other skills. It does not matter which skill
area one starts with—we ask the adolescent and parent which ones they are most motivated
to learn at that time.
When youth are consistently performing the skills measured in the four domains of the TRAQ (scoring on average a 4.0 across the questions in each domain), it is a sign they are ready to move on to adult healthcare. With these skills (as displayed by scores of 4 or more consistently across the scale) in hand, they are more likely to successfully transition to adult care because they know how to access and utilize the healthcare system and well as manage their own medications or other health issues.