Clinical and Non-Clinical Characteristics Associated with Medication Use Among Children with Serious Emotional Disturbance
- 101 Downloads
Our study explores the clinical and non-clinical characteristics associated with medication use among children with serious emotional disturbance who are referred into community-based family-driven system of care settings. Using data collected as part of the Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Their Families Program initiative, our study provides results from analyses completed on 7,009 children and adolescents with serious emotional disturbance. Using both bivariate and multivariate statistical analyses, the researchers found that females entering systems of care were less likely to have received medication in the 6-months prior to entry, as were children of African-American and Native-American heritage compared to children from non-Hispanic White heritage. Children referred from mental health, child welfare or who were self-referred were more likely to use medications than those referred from juvenile justice. Children with histories of prior inpatient, outpatient, day treatment, or school-based services were between 2 and 4 times more likely to use medications than children without such histories. Children with family histories of mental illness and those who were Medicaid recipients were also more likely to use medications. Family income was also positively related to medication use and younger children were more likely to use medications than older children. Implications of the findings are discussed.
KeywordsPsychotropic medication Medication use Systems of care Child and adolescent mental health services
This research was funded by the Center for Mental Health Services of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (280-99-8023, 280-00-8040). The children and families who participated in the ongoing collection of data made this research possible.
- American Psychiatric Association. (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
- Bassarath, L. (2003). Medication strategies in childhood aggression: A review. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 48, 367–373.Google Scholar
- Center for Mental Health Services. (2001). Annual Report to Congress on the Evaluation of the Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Their Families Program. Atlanta, GA: ORC Macro International, Inc.Google Scholar
- Connor, D., Ozbayrak, K., & Harrison, R. (1998). Prevalence and patterns of psychotropic and anticonvulsant medication use in children and adolescents referred to residential treatment. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, 8, 27–38.Google Scholar
- Epstein, M., & Cullinan, D. 1995. Personal, family, and service use characteristics of young people served by an interagency community-based system of care. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 3, 55–69.Google Scholar
- Gadow, K., (1997). An overview of three decades of research in pediatric psychopharmacologic epidemiology. Journal of Child and Adolescents Psychopharmacology, 7, 219–236.Google Scholar
- Hallfors, D. 1998. An examination of psychotropic drug treatment for children with serious emotional disturbance. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 6, 56–67.Google Scholar
- Lyons, J. (2000). A call for outcomes data: Psychopharmacology with children. Outcomes and Accountability Alert, 5, 1–13.Google Scholar
- Pumariega, A., Del Muno A., & Vance, B. (2002). Psychopharmacology in the context of systems of care. In: B. J. Burns & K. Hoagwood (Eds.), Community treatment for youth (pp. 277–300). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Werry, J., & Aman, M. (1993). Practitioner’s guide to psychoactive drugs for children and adolescents. New York: Plenum.Google Scholar
- Zito, J., Safer, D., DosReis, S., Gardner, J., Magder, L., Soeken, K., Boles, M., Lynch, F., & Riddle, M. (2003). Psychotropic practice patterns for youth: A 10-year perspective. Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 157, 17–25.Google Scholar