Research: Children placed in out-of-home care as adults face more problems than their peers

According to a joint study by Finland and the United Kingdom, children placed in outpatient care are at increased risk of having problematic consequences in adulthood.

The research carried out by researchers from the University of Helsinki, the University of Eastern Finland and the University of Oxford was exceptionally extensive and covered all children born in Finland between 1986 and 2000.

During that time, of the approximately 890,000 children, approximately 30,000 were placed in out-of-home care.

The study found that these children were 1.4 to 5 times more likely to experience adverse social and health consequences in adulthood compared to siblings who were never placed in care.

Researchers study, among other things, mental health problems, lack of social and economic skills, tendency to be a victim of violence, crime, suicidal traits, and mortality.

The ranking often just matches

As children cared for outside the home approached adulthood, their life situation deteriorated, according to the study, at all levels studied.

In addition, children placed in outdoor care with siblings did less well than their brothers and sisters who were not placed outside the home.

"There are concerns about the quality of child protection services. It is important that home care practices are developed and invested in preventing out-of-home investments in general," Professor at the University of Helsinki Heikki Hiilamo said in a statement.

In most cases, however, placement outside the home is the only option to protect the child’s environment, Hiilamo said, adding that such treatment is of great benefit in cases where parents abuse or neglect their children altogether.

The study, Long-Term Health and Social Outcomes for Children and Adolescents in Home Care, was published late last month in the Journal of the American Medical Association Network.

Source: The Nordic Page


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