A cross sectional survey was performed to obtain the characteristics of specialized inpatient psychiatry units exclusively serving children with autism and other developmental disorders in the United States. Identified units were surveyed on basic demographic characteristics, clinical challenges and therapeutic modalities. Average length of stay was 42.3 days, children with autism spectrum disorders constituted the majority of the inpatient population (62.5–87.5%), and obtaining adequate post-discharge services was identified as the greatest challenge. Health policy implications and future research directions are suggested.
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This study was funded in part by the Pond Family Foundation and a grant from the Maine Medical Center Research Institute. The authors thank Wendy St. Pierre, Ph.D. for contributions to this study. The authors report no financial conflicts of interest.
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Siegel, M., Doyle, K., Chemelski, B. et al. Specialized Inpatient Psychiatry Units for Children with Autism and Developmental Disorders: A United States Survey. J Autism Dev Disord 42, 1863–1869 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-011-1426-3