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Children in care have a high risk of mental illness as adolescents and young adults

BMJ 2006; 333 doi: (Published 06 July 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;333:0-e

Research question What happens to the mental health of children who are in some form of care before they reach 13 years?

Answer They are at least four times more likely than their peers to develop a serious psychiatric problem or to attempt suicide later on

Why did the authors do the study? Some evidence indicates that children who need foster care have a high risk of suicide later in life. But there are few large scale studies looking at the link between welfare (usually fostering) and other mental health outcomes, including attempted suicide. It's also unclear how these children compare with children who are adopted from …

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