Currently, in many cases, adoptive families must place their children and youth back in foster care to receive residential treatment. Children and youth with a history of trauma, especially those with previous residential treatment experience, are more likely to need extensive mental health services even after adoption. Out-of-home mental health, substance abuse, or other similar services should be designed to support child and family connections throughout the treatment period.
Policy and Practice Recommendations
State, provincial, and local policies should not penalize adoptive families whose adopted children and youth need out-of-home care. No family should be charged with abandonment or forced to give up custody of their child or youth in order to receive mental health services or out-of-home care.
State, provincial, and federal adoption assistance programs should cover the costs of necessary residential treatment for children and youth adopted from foster care if those costs are not covered by the family’s insurance policies.