The hospital as predictor of children's and adolescents' length of stay.
ABSTRACT To predict psychiatric hospital length of stay (LOS) for a sample of Illinois Department of Children and Family Services wards across 4 fiscal years.
A prospective design was implemented using the Children's Severity of Psychiatric Illness scale, a reliable and valid measure of psychiatric severity, risk factors, youth strengths, and contextual/environmental factors. Data were collected for 1,930 hospital episodes across 44 hospitals from fiscal year 1998 through fiscal year 2001. Youths were screened for admission appropriateness by the Illinois Screening, Assessment, and Supportive Services (SASS) program. The Children's Severity of Psychiatric Illness was completed by SASS workers upon conclusion of their crisis interviews. In addition to completing the Children's Severity of Psychiatric Illness, SASS workers reported on demographic information and LOS.
The sample of 1,930 youths was randomly split to form development (n = 983) and validation (n = 947) samples. LOS was predicted using ordinary least squares regression. Thirty percent of the variance (F(19,666) = 16.6, p < .0001) in LOS was predicted for the development sample and 22% (F(14,657) = 14.6, p < .0001) was predicted for the confirmation sample. Hospital was the largest and most consistent predictor of LOS for both samples after controlling for clinical variables. Two hospitals accounted for approximately 10% of the variance in both samples (development beta = .273, p < .01 and beta = -.169, p < .01). Two SASS agencies also consistently predicted LOS (development beta = -.134, p < .05 and beta = .102, p < .05). No consistent changes in predictors of LOS occurred over time (FY98-FY01).
These findings suggest that nonclinical variables are the primary predictors of LOS in the Illinois system of care. In addition, these variables are consistent predictors over time. Quality assurance efforts might seek to further understand potential practice pattern variations across hospitals and SASS agencies.
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ABSTRACT: The study tested the feasibility of using practice-based evidence to improve children’s treatment response to inpatient care in psychiatric hospitals. A total of 524 children (aged four to 12 years) who were patients at three psychiatric hospitals with child units were studied between October 1, 2009, and October 1, 2010. The Acuity of Psychiatric Illness, Child and Adolescent Version (CAPI), a reliable and valid measure of risk behaviors, symptoms, and functioning, was completed each weekday by trained frontline staff on the milieu. Growth curve modeling via hierarchical linear modeling was used, and linear trajectories were fit to children’s CAPI scores over days in care. Trajectories of CAPI acuity scores varied significantly among the children, and changes in scores (slope of the trajectories) were predicted by several clinical variables at intake. These variables included externalizing behavior, such as aggressive behavior toward others and objects and sexual aggression, and internalizing symptoms, such as self-mutilation behaviors and suicidal ideation or gestures. Further, moderation analyses revealed that the hospital unit serving the youths moderated the effect of intake clinical characteristics on the trajectories of acuity scores. Regular measurement of psychiatric acuity using a reliable and valid measure has the potential to monitor an episode of care in real time and provide data that can be used to improve treatment. This approach may hold promise as a method to promote accountability across hospital systems and to identify the core competencies and deficits of hospitals in addressing specific problems presented at intake.Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.) 03/2013; 64(3):252-6. DOI:10.1176/appi.ps.201100448 · 2.81 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Many children and adolescents who require psychiatric hospitalization have been physically or sexually abused, yet the association between reported histories of abuse and the complexity and severity of mental illness among psychiatrically hospitalized youth is poorly described with regard to current inpatient psychiatric practice. We sought to determine the association between histories of abuse and psychiatric complexity and severity in psychiatrically hospitalized youth including comorbidity patterns, psychotropic medication use, reason for admission and length of hospitalization. A systematic chart review was performed on 1433 consecutive psychiatric hospitalizations of children and adolescents that occurred over a 10-month period. Children with a history of abuse were more likely to be diagnosed with multiple DSM-IV-TR disorders than non-traumatized children. A history of sexual abuse was associated with more medication use than in their non-traumatized peers and a higher likelihood of treatment with antipsychotic medications, both at admission and discharge. Physical and sexual abuse were independently associated with increased length of stays, with exposure to both physical and sexual abuse associated with a 2-day increase in duration of hospitalization compared to non-traumatized patients. The findings from this study draw attention to the adverse impact of abuse on psychiatric morbidity and complexity and suggest the need for trauma-informed treatment in psychiatric hospital settings.Child abuse & neglect 09/2013; DOI:10.1016/j.chiabu.2013.08.013 · 2.34 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This study examined the extent to which hospital and regional characteristics are associated with length of hospitalization among patients with serious mental illness. Data from the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council and 2006 American Hospital Association data were obtained. The sample consisted of 106 hospitals from which 45,497 adults with serious mental illness were discharged in 2006. Guided by the extended version of Andersen's health care utilization model, hierarchical linear modeling, including patient case mix, hospital, and regional characteristics, was used to explain variations in hospitalization length. The average length of stay was 10.0±3.0 days. Stays were longer at psychiatric hospitals than at general acute care facilities and at hospitals with a greater percentage of Medicare patients and patients with serious mental illness and a higher rate of readmission. In terms of regional characteristics, stays were also longer at hospitals in counties where the county mental health program received a larger percentage of the state's mental health budget and a smaller share of the budget was used for residential care. Hospital type and case mix, along with the presence of housing resources funded by county mental health programs, were found to be associated with variations in length of hospitalization. Further research of a longitudinal or prospective nature is required to determine whether the availability of housing programs for persons with mental disorders leads to shorter hospital stays for those in crisis and to determine whether longer stays are the result of differences in hospital practices. (Psychiatric Services 63:889-895, 2012; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201100412).Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.) 07/2012; 63(9):889-95. DOI:10.1176/appi.ps.201100412 · 2.81 Impact Factor