The continuum of care describes the full range of treatment settings available to assist children and adolescents with psychiatric disorders. Settings range from least restrictive of the patients life (such as outpatient weekly psychotherapy) to most restrictive (such as year-round residential treatment.)

The AACAP endorses the principle that children and adolescents should be treated in the least restrictive setting appropriate to the individual's clinical needs. For a complete description of the continuum of care, see the Parent's Handbook.

Principles of Care for Treatment of Children and Adolescents with Mental Illnesses in Residential Treatment Centers (©2010)

Seclusion and Restraint Policy (©2000)

Seclusion and Restraint Articles - AACAP News

Inpatient Hospital Treatment of Children and Adolescents (©1989)

Model for Minimum Staffing Patterns for Hospitals Providing Acute Inpatient Treatment for Children and Adolescents with Psychiatric Illness (©1990)