The maintenance effect of cognitive–behavioural treatment groups for the Chinese parents of children with intellectual disabilities in Melbourne, Australia: a 6-month follow-up study

D. F. K. Wong*, A. Poon, Y. C. L. Kwok

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Caring for a child with intellectual disability can be stressful. No data on the longer-term effects of cognitive?behavioural treatment (CBT) on parents from a Chinese-speaking background who have children with intellectual disabilities are available in the literature. This study attempted to fill this research gap by examining the maintenance effect of CBT among the Chinese parents of such children in Melbourne, Australia.
Method: Thirty-nine participants took part in our CBT groups and attended follow-up meetings. A questionnaire comprising four instruments, the Parenting Stress Index (PS) ? Parent Domain, General Health Questionnaire-12 (GHQ-12), Abbreviated Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire (Q-LES-Q-18) and Dysfunctional Attitude Scale (DAS), was administered to the participants at the pre- and post-test stage and at the 6-month follow-up.
Results: One-way repeated-measures analyses of variance revealed significant time and group effects in the PS (F2,27 = 16.93, P < 0.001), Q-LES-Q-18 (F2,27 = 15.98, P < 0.001), GHQ-12 (F2,27 = 81.93, P < 0.001) and DAS (F2,27 = 15.50, P < 0.001) scores at the three measurement times. The participants continued to maintain significant improvements in mental health and quality of life and declines in the severity of parenting stress and dysfunctional attitudes at the 6-month follow-up. Effect size analyses revealed mostly large differences in the foregoing measurements (Cohen's d = 0.76–2.18) between the pre-test and 6-month follow-up. Employing a cut-off score of 3/4 in the GHQ-12 to identify at-risk and not-at-risk cases, approximately 90.5% of the participants could be classified as not-at-risk at the follow-up. Lastly, regression analyses showed that changes in DAS scores significantly predicted changes in the GHQ-12 and Q-LES-Q-18 scores at the follow-up.
Conclusions: This study provides preliminary evidence of the 6-month maintenance effect of CBT groups for the Melbourne-resident Chinese parents of children with intellectual disabilities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1043-1053
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disability Research
Volume55
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011

User-Defined Keywords

  • children with intellectual disabilities
  • Chinese parents
  • group treatment
  • longer-term maintenance effect of CBT
  • mental health
  • parenting stress

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