Relationship between family quality of life and day occupations of young people with Down syndrome
Foley, KR, Girdler, S, Downs, J, Jacoby, P, Bourke, J, Lennox, N, Einfeld, S, Llewellyn, G, Parmenter, TR & Leonard, H 2014, 'Relationship between family quality of life and day occupations of young people with Down syndrome', Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, vol. 49, no. 9, pp. 1455-1465.
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Purpose: To explore relationships between family quality of life, day occupations and activities of daily living (ADL) of young persons with Down syndrome.
Method: Data were collected from 150 families with a young person with Down syndrome aged 16–30 years participating in the Down syndrome ‘‘Needs Opinions Wishes’’ database. Data described the young person’s characteristics (including functional abilities, behaviour and day occupations) and family characteristics (including income, family and community supports and quality of life).
Results: Compared to families of young people attending open employment, families of young people participating in sheltered employment tended to report poorer family quality of life, after adjusting for personal characteristics, behaviour and income (coeff -6.78, 95 % CI -14.38, 0.81). Family supports reduced this relationship (coeff -6.00, 95 % CI -12.76, 0.76). Families of young people with greater functioning in ADL reported better family quality of life regardless of personal and environmental factors (coeff 0.45, 95 % CI 0.05, 0.85) and inclusion of family factors such as family supports reduced this association (coeff 0.29, 95 % CI -0.10, 0.67).
Conclusions: Participation of young people with Down syndrome in open employment may positively influence family quality of life. Services that facilitate functioning in ADL and assist the families in accessing suitable family supports have the potential to positively influence family quality of life.