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Annual Research Review: Child and adolescent mental health interventions: a review of progress in economic studies across different disorders

Beecham, Jennifer (2014) Annual Research Review: Child and adolescent mental health interventions: a review of progress in economic studies across different disorders. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 55 (6). pp. 714-732. ISSN 0021-9630. E-ISSN 1469-7610. (doi:10.1111/jcpp.12216) (KAR id:41631)


Background: Resources for supporting children and adolescents with psychiatric disorders continue to be scarce. Economics research can identify current patterns of expenditure, and help inform allocation of treatment and support resources between competing needs or uses.

Scope and methods: The aim was to identify the costs of supporting children and adolescents, the economic impacts of childhood psychiatric disorders in adulthood and any new evidence on the cost-effectiveness of interventions. An electronic search of databases (including PubMed, Medline and Psychinfo) identified peer-reviewed journal articles published between 2005 and 2012.

Findings: Sixty-seven papers provided data on support and treatment costs now or in the future, or cost-effectiveness analyses of services. Half the articles came from the United States. Most articles focussed on autism spectrum disorder (ASD; 23 articles), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD; n = 15), conduct disorder (CD; n = 7), and anxiety or depression (n = 8).

Conclusion: Only 14 studies used a cost perspective wider than health care; most included education costs (n = 11), but only five included costs to the justice system. The number of studies estimating costs to the family has increased, particularly for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In the United Kingdom, support costs for children and adolescents with conduct disorder (CD) appear to be lower than for those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), although for the United States, the opposite may be true. Support costs for children and adolescents with ASD may be higher than both CD and ADHD. However, there were many differences between the samples and the methods employed making comparisons between studies difficult. Outcomes in adulthood include negative impacts on (mental) health, quality of life, public sector services, employment status and income. The evidence base is improving for child and adolescent psychiatric disorders, although only one full cost-effectiveness analysis was identified since the previous review published in 2012. However, we still do not know enough about the economic implications of support and treatment for specific disorders.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/jcpp.12216
Uncontrolled keywords: child mental health
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research > Personal Social Services Research Unit
Depositing User: R. Bass
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2014 14:35 UTC
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2022 04:21 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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