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Variations in the costs of child and adolescent psychiatric inpatient units

Beecham, Jennifer, Chisholm, Daniel, O'Herlihy, Anne and Astin, Jack (2003) Variations in the costs of child and adolescent psychiatric inpatient units. British Journal of Psychiatry, 183 (3). pp. 220-225. ISSN 0007-1250

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Identification Number: 10.1192/02-548


Background: Child and adolescent in-patient care is a highly specialised service, ideally requiring planning at a national level, but there are no routine data collections specifically for these services. Aims: To estimate unit costs for child and adolescent psychiatric in-patient units and to analyse the variations in costs between units. Method: Data collection alongside a national survey with cost estimations guided byprinciples drawn from economic theory. Bivariate and multivariate analyses are employed to identify cost influences. Results: Fifty-eight units could provide sufficient data to allow calculation of the cost per in-patient day; mean=£197 (s.d.=71.6; 1999–2000 prices). The management sector, type of provision, number of rooms, capacity and location explained nearly half of the cost variation. Conclusions: Child and adolescent psychiatric in-patient units are an expensive resource, with personnel absorbing two-thirds of the total costs. Costs per in-patient day vary fourfold and the exploration of cost variations can inform commissioning strategies.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2003 The Royal College of Psychiatrists
Divisions: Personal Social Services Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
JEL classification: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I1 - Health > I12 - Health Production: Nutrition, Mortality, Morbidity, Suicide, Substance Abuse and Addiction, Disability, and Economic Behavior
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2008 10:32
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2024 00:18

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