Rehospitalization to a child and adolescent psychiatry unit: Role of trauma and bullying

Matej Markota, Alastair J. McKean, Magdalena Romanowicz, Kathryn M. Schak, Paul E. Croarkin, Jennifer L. Vande Voort

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Objective: Psychiatric rehospitalizations results in a significant burden to patients, families, and health care systems. Understanding psychiatric rehospitalizations offers an opportunity to identify weaknesses in current systems of care. The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that a history of trauma or ongoing bullying increases the risk of psychiatric rehospitalization. Method: Retrospective cohort study of 366 individual patients (71% female) admitted to a pediatric psychiatry unit between 1/1/2015 and 12/31/2015. The primary outcome measure was rehospitalization to the same psychiatric hospital unit within one year of first discharge. Trauma was defined as having a history of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Reactive Attachment Disorder, or a filed Suspected Abuse and Neglect of a Child report by the end of first hospitalization. Ongoing bullying was identified by medical record review. Results: History of trauma (Odds Ratio (OR) = 3.2, 95% Confidence Interval (CI) = 1.8–5.6, p < 0.0001) and ongoing bullying (OR = 2.2, CI = 1.2–3.9, p = 0.009) were significantly associated with increased rates of rehospitalizations. We controlled for the following covariates: Patient Health Questionnaire-9 Modified (PHQ-9M) score, gender, age, relative age, initial length of stay, disrupted family system, and sexual orientation/identity. Conclusion: History of trauma or ongoing bullying are important risk factors for pediatric psychiatric rehospitalization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10-14
Number of pages5
JournalGeneral Hospital Psychiatry
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018


  • Bullying
  • Pediatric psychiatric rehospitalization
  • Trauma
  • Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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