Evaluation of Hospital-Based Outpatient Pediatric Psychology Services

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Psychology (CMC)

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Important to the growth of a field is the quantitative description of its activities. The present study measured service characteristics of a hospital based Pediatric Psychology outpatient clinic during a 1 year period. One-hundred cases referred consecutively to our program were analyzed in terms of patient and problem characteristics, recommended treatments, clinical outcome and consumer satisfaction. The results indicated that (a) non compliance, tantrums and aggression were among the parents' foremost concerns, (b) a behavioral treatment approach resulted in successful clinical outcomes in a majority of cases as judged by therapists, (c) clinical im provements were typically sustained for at least 1 year although problems continued to occur occasionally in slightly less than half of the cases, (d) new behavior problems did not emerge in approximately 80% of the cases following termination of services, (e) when new behavior problems did occur, the majority of parents did not require additional clinic contact to carry out reportedly therapeutically correct management strategies, and (f) most parents were satisfied or extremely satisfied with services. The results provide an example of quantitatively documenting clinic efficacy and deficiency, an activity that is increasingly necessary for the survival of Pediatric Psychology services in a financially burdened health care system.

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© 1987 Society of Pediatric Psychology

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