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Effect of the COVID‐19 pandemic on the mental health of carers of people with intellectual disabilities

Willner, Paul, Rose, John, Stenfert Kroese, Biza, Murphy, Glynis H., Langdon, Peter E., Clifford, Claire, Hutchings, Hayley, Watkins, Alan, Hiles, Steve, Cooper, Vivien and others. (2020) Effect of the COVID‐19 pandemic on the mental health of carers of people with intellectual disabilities. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, . ISSN 1360-2322. (doi:10.1111/jar.12811) (KAR id:83765)



The measures implemented to manage the COVID‐19 pandemic have been shown to impair mental health. This problem is likely to be exacerbated for carers. Method: Informal carers (mainly parents) of children and adults with intellectual disabilities, and a comparison group of parents of children without disabilities, completed an online questionnaire. Almost all the data were collected while strict lockdown conditions were in place. Results: Relative to carers of children without intellectual disability, carers of both children and adults with intellectual disability had significantly greater levels of a wish fulfilment coping style, defeat/entrapment, anxiety, and depression. Differences were 2–3 times greater than reported in earlier pre‐pandemic studies. Positive correlations were found between objective stress scores and all mental health outcomes. Despite their greater mental health needs, carers of those with intellectual disability received less social support from a variety of sources. Conclusions: The greater mental health needs of carers in the context of lesser social support raises serious concerns. We consider the policy implications of these findings.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/jar.12811
Uncontrolled keywords: carers, COVID-19, depression, intellectual disability, mental health, social support, stress
Subjects: H Social Sciences
R Medicine
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research > Tizard
Depositing User: Glynis Murphy
Date Deposited: 27 Oct 2020 14:59 UTC
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 17:17 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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