The purpose of this paper is to study the profiles of adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) requiring an inpatient psychiatric admission.
This paper examines profiles of 27 inpatients with intellectual disability (ID) and ASD who were admitted to a specialized inpatient unit in two time periods (January 2005 to June 2009 and July 2009 to December 2013) to explore changes over time in patient profiles.
Findings suggest that individuals who were admitted more recently between July 2009 and December 2013, were younger and more likely to come from other ethnic backgrounds than those admitted between January 2005 and June 2009. There was a trend for recent admissions to come from family homes, have moderate to profound ID and have longer hospital stay.
This is the first study to compare profiles of adults with ASD receiving inpatient services over time. The value of the study lies in illustrating that the needs of this growing patient group are changing which has implications for the treatment provision including specialized inpatient treatment.