Predicting Child-to-Adult Community Mental Health Service Continuation

Deborah A. Cohen, Vanessa V. Klodnick, Mark D. Kramer, Stephen M. Strakowski, James Baker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Serious mental health conditions peak in prevalence and incidence during the transition to adulthood (approximately ages 16–25). Young adults are at high risk for discontinuation of care when no longer eligible for child mental health services. This study uses state administrative data to examine service continuation among those aging out of child system services in Texas (N = 3135). Most (63.5%) did not enroll in adult services following their 18th birthday. Binary logistic regression analyses found that significant predictors of child-to-adult service continuation included (1) a serious primary mental health diagnosis (i.e., schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder), (2) risks to self and others, and (3) number of prior-year mental health services received. These findings suggest that historical mental health policies and practices may contribute to service disconnection at age 18 in Texas. Implications for mental health policy and system reform locally and nationally are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-345
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Behavioral Health Services and Research
Volume47
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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