Effects of Institutional Care

Institutionalising children has been shown to cause a wide range of problems for their development, well-being and longer-term outcomes. Institutional care does not adequately provide the level of positive individual attention from consistent caregivers which is essential for the successful emotional, physical, mental, and social development of children. This is profoundly relevant for children under 3 years of age for whom institutional care has been shown to be especially damaging. 

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Sibnath Deb, Aleena Maria Sunny, Bishakha Majumdar - Disadvantaged Children in India ,

The main focus of this chapter is to define institutions, their objectives and the nature of services rendered.

Peñarrubia María, Palacios Jesús, Román Maite - Children and Youth Services Review,

In this study, executive functions were examined in post-institutionalized children adopted into Spanish families from Russian institutions.

Eric Rosenthal, Dragana Ciric Milovanovic, Laurie Ahern - Disability Rights International,

The main finding of this report from Disability Rights International (DRI) is that Bulgaria has replaced a system of large, old orphanages with newer, smaller buildings that are still operating as institutions.

Joana Baptista, Jay Belsky, Sofia Marques, Joana R. Silva, Carla Martins, Isabel Soares - Infant Behavior and Development,

This study extends research on the effects of institutionalization—by examining the trajectories of cognitive, language and motor development of 64 Portuguese infants and toddlers across the first six months of institutionalization, while determining whether pre-institutional adversities and the stability and consistency of institutional care predict children’s development.

Kalsea J. Koss, Jamie M. Lawler and Megan R. Gunnar - Development and Psychopathology,

This study examined whether and how postadoption parenting promotes recovery in children experiencing early life adversity in the form of institutional care. Results support the notion that postadoption parenting during toddlerhood and the early preschool years promotes better regulation skills following early adversity.

Charles H. Zeanah - Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry,

The purpose of this presentation is to summarize findings from the Bucharest Early Intervention Project (BEIP) - the only randomized, controlled trial of foster care (FC) as an alternative to institutional care ever conducted - regarding psychopathology and competence through age 12 years.

Megan M. Julian, Junlei Li, Annie Wright, Pamela A. Jimenez-Etcheverria - Children’s Social Worlds in Cultural Context,

In this article, institutions in Russia, China, Ghana, and Chile are described with reference to the circumstances that lead to children’s institutionalization, resident children’s social-emotional relationships, and unique characteristics of each country’s institutional care (e.g., volunteer tourism in Ghana, and shifting demographics of institutionalized children in China).

Anna W. Wright, Simron Richard, David W. Sosnowski, Wendy Kliewer - Journal of Child and Family Studies,

The goal of this paper was to review and critique the literature examining predictors of better-than-expected adjustment of children who have experienced institutional care.

AlvaTang, Nathan A. Fox, Charles A. Nelson, Charles H. Zeanah, Natalie Slopen - Psychoneuroendocrinology,

This paper examines associations between internalizing and externalizing psychopathology and inflammation in adolescents with a history of severe psychosocial deprivation and children reared in typical family contexts. The paper presents findings from the Bucharest Early Intervention Project, a longitudinal randomized trial of high-quality foster care as an alternative to institutional care.

Mark Wade, Charles H. Zeanah, Nathan A. Fox, and Charles A. Nelson - Psychological Medicine,

This study examined whether global deficits in executive functioning (EF) mediate the association between severe childhood neglect and general v. specific psychopathology in adolescence. The sample consisted of 188 children from the Bucharest Early Intervention Project, a longitudinal study examining the brain and behavioral development of children reared in Romanian institutions and a comparison group of never-institutionalized children.