Due to the nature and complexity of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), which typically requires coordination among various treatments targeting different areas of need, the entire family is impacted. Family quality of life (FQOL) research has emerged to address the range of adaptation families experience when raising a child with ASD. One factor that is likely to impact FQOL relates to families’ service use to support their child’s needs. The goal of the present study was to examine the relations between specific domains of FQOL and service usage type among families of children with ASD.
A total of 164 caregivers of children diagnosed with ASD were asked which autism services they were currently using and completed the Beach Center Family Quality of Life Scale and the Nisonger Child Behaviour Rating Form.
Findings revealed that service usage type significantly predicted families’ satisfaction with their emotional well-being, physical/material well-being, and disability-related support. Specifically, families using a combination of mental health services and ADL therapies reported greater satisfaction in these FQOL domains.
Present findings underscore that families need access to a sufficiently broad range of child services and supports in order to benefit their FQOL.