Inpatient behavioral feeding

The Inpatient Behavioral Feeding Program at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin provides intensive behavioral assessment and intervention for children with feeding disorders.

The program includes:

  • Ongoing assessment of feeding problems
  • Development of a behavioral treatment plan.
  • Reduction/elimination of tube feeding to encourage hunger and increase motivation for oral feeding.
  • Intensive feeding therapy with a pediatric psychologist specializing in feeding disorders.
  • Training and other education to provide parents the skills necessary to respond to behavioral problems and maintain successful oral feeding at home.
  • 24-hour supervision for children who require physician and nursing care for fluid and nutrition intake.

Goals are individualized for each child, but may include:

  • Improving quantity of oral feeding.
  • Increasing the variety of foods and textures accepted.
  • Decreasing mealtime behavior problems.
  • Teaching the child to associate hunger with feeding.

Children are admitted to the program for about a two-week inpatient stay when:

  • Medically necessary.
  • Outpatient treatments have been ineffective.
  • Their nutritional and weight status is adequate for intensive behavioral intervention.
  • Parents agree to be present for all meals during the hospitalization.