Quality of life (QOL) of parents of children with developmental disabilities

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Quality of life (QOL) of parents of children with developmental disabilities


Author: Leung, Yuen-shan Cecilia
Title: Quality of life (QOL) of parents of children with developmental disabilities
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2002
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Quality of life -- China -- Hong Kong
Parents of children with disabilities -- China -- Hong Kong
Department: Multi-disciplinary Studies
Dept. of Rehabilitation Sciences
Pages: viii, 84 leaves : ill. (some col.) ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1659021
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/4025
Abstract: Quality of Life (QOL) was defined as individual subjective perception towards different aspects of life namely Physical Health, Psychological Domain, Social relationships and Environment. It was affected by a number of influential factors e.g. individual personality, spousal relationship, and coping skills etc. This study focuses on functional independence level of children and examines the QOL of parents with disabled children. A total of 147 parents with and without disabled child were recruited. Hong Kong Chinese Version World Health Organization Quality of Life Measure Abbreviated version (WHOQOL_BREF (HK)), and Wee Functional Independence Measure (Wee FIM) were used to measure parents' QOL and children's functional independence level respectively. Independent T-test was applied. There is a significant difference in Social relationships of QOL between parents of children with and without disabilities. It might be due to the relatives and friends' ignorance and their negative reaction towards the family with disabled child, and parents' social withdrawal from the society. Such parents' social support was reduced and network was narrowed. Similar finding is detected in Environment Domain of QOL. This might be explained by the observation that disabled children may need extra parental care, therefore, their parents were required to devote most of time taking care of their children that in turns reduced their participation in social activity. The result showed an insignificant difference in Physical Health Domain of QOL between two groups. It might due to adjustment on the de-emphasizing the importance of parents' physical functions that was affected by the disabled child, and value adjustment on unrealistic striving to a high QOL. The positive adaptation and coping skill of parents with disabled child could lower their stress perception and bring them a positive perception towards life. An insignificant difference in Psychological Domain of QOL between 2 parents groups was obtained. It was due to a reach of final stage of acceptance of the parents with disabled child or lack of triggered transitional crisis of the disabled child, stressful feeling was avoided and positive life perception was resulted. In view of the above differences in QOL between the two parents groups, correlation between parents' QOL and children's functional independence level was studied. A significant and positive correlation on the two variables in Physical Health, Psychological Domain, and Environment of QOL in parents with disabled child was noted. Children with developmental disabilities needed extra parental care and support who imposed a burden and stress to their parents. Hence, quality of life of such parents was then affected. It is hoped that this study could arouse the awareness of health care professionals on the QOL of parents with disabled child, and could provide them with a reference for designing QOL improvement program to the parents in need.

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