The United States has a long history of institutionalization of youth with social, emotional and behavioral needs. Advocacy groups have focused on the deinstitutionalization of youth. Still, the United States leads the world in incarceration of youth in juvenile justice (over 100,000, 75% from minority populations, with high mental health needs) and has over 200,000 youth in behavioral residential treatment facilities (RTFs). More recently, large numbers of undocumented immigrant Latino youth are now placed in residential facilities. This practice continues even with a lack of evidence for benefit from RTFs, high rates of prior traumatization among youth in RTFs and recent investigations of abuses within RTFs. This presentation examines the placement of youth RTFs in the United States, the evidence around mental health needs and the trauma histories of youths served, and the policy and system reforms needed to address the adverse consequences of this practice.
**This content was captured at the 2016 APA Annual Meeting and may reference information from various sources and terminology from previous editions of the DSM.
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- Describe the connection between America’s history of institutionalization and the prevailing treatment models of children with mental illness
- Identify barriers to children’s mental health services and pathways to institutionalization
- Examine the effects of trauma and re-traumatization in residential treatment facilities and present successful alternatives
Estimated Time to Complete
Estimated Duration: 30 minutes
Begin Date: April 1, 2017
End Date: February 1, 2020
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Faculty and Planner Disclosures
- Andres J. Pumariega, M.D., Cooper University Hospital and Health System. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Tristan Gorrindo, M.D., Director of Education, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Lynneice Bowen, M.D., M.Ed., Medical University of South Carolina. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Ricardo A. Juarez, M.S., Deputy Director, Development and Engagement, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Claire Van Wagner, Membership Development Coordinator, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
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