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Eval Health Prof. 1981 Mar;4(1):49-58.

The Woodhaven short-term model reconsidered: a study of developmental growth and criteria for discharge.


This article concerns the issues surrounding discharge of mentally retarded clients from a short-term, intensive residential service setting. The Temple University Woodhaven Center is designed as a two-year setting for about 270 clients. They require intensive assistance in acquiring behaviors necessary for independent functioning and in learning appropriate social behavior, so that they can adapt to and thrive in a less restrictive, more integrated setting. Woodhaven, however, serves clients at all levels of retardation. The question arises: How is it decided who is to be discharged and when? Upon entry to Woodhaven, a contract is written with the family and client, specifying what behavioral changes are expected as preconditions for discharge. In this approach, a client should be discharged upon attainment of contract goals. A second approach uses adaptive behavior skills as a criterion of progress, and attempts to determine the level of skills displayed by other, similar clients who are already living in the community. This second, criterion-referenced approach is important not only for discharge decisions from one facility, but for broad service system planning as well. The results of the present study supported the notion of a two-year intensive residential program.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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