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Title: Use of different services by parents of children with an autism spectrum disorder - A mixed methods design
Author: Yin, Kitty Kwan Pui
Awarding Body: University of Essex
Current Institution: University of Essex
Date of Award: 2013
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The overall objective of this study was to understand the use of services by parents of children with an autism spectrum disorder in an inner London area. Children for this study were aged between four to eight years. A concurrent mixed method design was adopted. The primary investigation involved a quantitative approach to identify factors that were associated with and predictive of service use. Child factors (of neuropsychiatric symptoms, behavioural disturbances, autism symptomatology, and IQ), parental factors (ofparenting stress and depression), and socioeconomic factors were included in the quantitative investigation. Five support types from different services were included. Individual interviews with a small number of purposiveJy selected parents also took place to explore their views and beliefs that might be related to service use decisions. As predicted, ASD children of this sample were reported to have a high level of neuropsychiatric symptoms and behavioural disturbances. The level c;f parenting stress and risk of depression were clinically significant in a majority of this parent sample. IQ was not related to any child and parental factors. As also expected, a high level of service use was found in this parent sample, in that a majority of parents reported use of multiple services. Users and non-users of CAMHS and Social Care were analysed. Of all associated factors, the level of behavioural disturbances was the only factor found to be significantly predictive of CAi\1HS use. Predictive factors for Social Care use included parenting stress, intellectual impairment, and speaking English at home. Information from individual interviews with parents revealed high level of demands and challenges faced by parents. Issues related to service use decision were highlighted, including I 1 1 1 I j USE OF SERV1CES BY PARENTS OF ASD CHlLDREN J J difficulties finding out services thal were available and equality of access. Implications for clinical practice, future research directions and service development were discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available