Background: Transitional Age Youth (TAY), the period between 15-25 years old,
is now recognized as a unique developmental stage and a highly vulnerable time period for
the onset of Serious Mental Illness (SMI).
Objective: The study aimed to inform readers about TAY with SMI to improve recognition
of their developmental needs and improve patient care.
Methods: The authors describe their work with TAY experiencing SMI on inpatient
psychiatric units by citing case examples that illustrate individual treatment issues, the level
of family involvement in care, and social/systems based practice.
Results: TAY patients with SMI are more likely to adhere to ongoing psychiatric care when
their developmental needs are addressed while in an acute inpatient setting.
Conclusion: Focusing on mental health needs of TAY while applying a developmental
perspective can improve patient care and compliance to treatment.