Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Foster care a sound choice for some maltreated children

Date:
May 6, 2013
Source:
American Academy of Pediatrics
Summary:
Newspaper articles, TV shows and books are filled with horror stories of children placed in foster care. A new study bucks that trend by showing out-of-home placements can improve the emotional health of some youths who have been maltreated by a parent.

Newspaper articles, TV shows and books are filled with horror stories of children placed in foster care. A new study bucks that trend by showing out-of-home placements can improve the emotional health of some youths who have been maltreated by a parent.

Related Articles


The study, led by Ann-Marie Conn, PhD, general pediatric academic fellow at University of Rochester Medical Center in New York, will be presented Monday, May 6, at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Washington, DC.

Dr. Conn and her colleagues compared mental health problems in 281 children ages 3-18 years who remained at home after being maltreated, with 482 children who were placed out of their homes (e.g., in foster care). These children were from a nationally representative sample of children referred to child welfare.

The Child Behavior Checklist was administered to the children three to six months after a placement decision was made (baseline) and 18 months later. The results were compared between the groups. In addition, investigators compared mental health problems among children in each group who had similar prior adverse experiences, which were defined as physical, emotional or sexual abuse; neglect; having a caregiver with mental health or substance abuse problems; having a caregiver who was abused; and the presence of criminal behavior in the home.

Results showed that 26 percent of children in both groups had mental health problems at baseline.

Eighteen months after placement, the percentage of 6- to 10-year-olds with mental health problems decreased significantly from 34 percent to 17 percent among those who were moved to alternative placements. Mental health problems remained stable among youths ages 11-18 years and increased from 10 percent to 18 percent of 3- to 5-year-olds.

Among children who remained at home, the percentage of 6- to 10-year-olds with mental health problems increased from 21 percent to 35 percent after 18 months, remained stable among youths ages 11-18 years, and decreased from 18 percent to 13 percent of 3- to 5-year-olds. These differences were not statistically significant.

When children were matched according to demographics, adverse experiences and mental health treatment use, there were no differences in mental health at 18 months between the two placement groups.

Dr. Conn noted that mental health problems improved among school-age children placed in out-of-home settings, such as foster care, even though children who remained at home received more mental health services and their parents participated in specialized training.

The findings support the therapeutic nature of out-of-home interventions and highlight the importance of considering factors, such as a child's age, in placement decisions, she said.

"After maltreatment has occurred, temporary removal from a stressful home environment may foster a sense of safety and security," Dr. Conn concluded. "Placement alternatives, including foster care, can have emotional health benefits for some maltreated children."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Pediatrics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Academy of Pediatrics. "Foster care a sound choice for some maltreated children." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 May 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130506095413.htm>.
American Academy of Pediatrics. (2013, May 6). Foster care a sound choice for some maltreated children. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130506095413.htm
American Academy of Pediatrics. "Foster care a sound choice for some maltreated children." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130506095413.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins