Change in mental health symptoms in families with nonresponding children referred to inpatient family units
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionClinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 2018, 1-12. 10.1177/1359104518794239
Aims: To examine changes in child mental health symptoms following inpatient family unit treatment after long-term unsuccessful treatment in community and child psychiatry outpatient services. Follow-up from referral and admission to 3 and 12 months. Methods: Standardized questionnaires measuring the child mental health symptoms and parental anxiety and depression converted to standardized scores and compared to each child’s clinical diagnosis. Results: Significant group mean improvement on almost all problem scales at the 3-month follow-up (T2) remaining through 12-month follow-up (T3) relative to admission (T1). Aggression showed the highest levels and largest improvements. Statistically significant improvements were widespread, whereas clinically significant improvements were found for some diagnostic groups on diagnosis-related problems and secondary problems. Improvement in child symptoms were partly correlated with improvement in parental anxiety symptoms. Implications: Even previously nonresponding children may benefit from broad tailored interventions including parents and the wider system. Development of systematic component approaches is needed.