Longitudinal outcomes for youth transported to wilderness therapy programs


Purpose: Due to the ethical concern around involuntary treatment, this study sought to investigate if youth participants in wilderness therapy who were transported to the program experienced different rates of change than those not transported.

Methods: Multilevel modeling techniques were used to investigate rates of change for youth between transported and nontransported youth over 5 points until 6 months postdischarge. In addition, repeated measures analyses of variance investigated parent reports of change over time across transport status, gender, and diagnosis.

Results: The findings showed no differences between transported and nontransported youth in changes over time. Overall, all youth improved significantly with changes maintained postdischarge regardless of transport status.

Discussion: This study shows that transporting youth to treatment does not appear to interfere with the treatment outcome; however, more research is needed to understand clients’ perception of the transport process.


Social Work

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Research on Social Work Practice



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