Unmet Need for Therapy Among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Results from the 2005–2006 and 2009–2010 National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs

Teal W. Benevides, Henry J. Carretta, Shelly J. Lane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives We examined population-based trends in unmet need for therapy service in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) compared to other children with special health care needs (CSHCN), and identified factors associated with unmet need for therapy. Methods A pooled cross-sectional comparison of the 2005–2006 and 2009–2010 waves of the National Survey for Children with Special Health Care Needs (NS-CSHCN) was used. Weighted bivariate analyses were used to compare children ages 3–17 years with ASD (n = 5113) to other CSHCN (n = 71,294) on unmet need for therapy services. Survey weighted multivariate models were used to examine child, family, and contextual characteristics associated with unmet need. Results A greater percentage of children with ASD across both surveys were reported to need therapy than other children with CSHCN. Among children with a reported need, children with ASD were 1.4 times more likely to report an unmet need for therapy compared to other CSHCN (OR 1.42, 95 % CI 1.18–1.71). Variables significantly associated with unmet need for therapy services included not receiving a well-child visit in the past year (OR 5.81, CI 3.83–8.81), surveyed in 2009 (OR 1.42, CI 1.18–1.71), child being female (OR 1.27, CI 1.05–1.53), uninsured (OR 1.72, CI 1.15–2.56), and having greater functional limitation (OR 2.44, CI 1.80–3.34). Conclusions for Practice Children with ASD require supportive services such as occupational, physical, and speech therapy but are less likely to receive such services than other CSHCN. Receiving a well-child visit in the past year was strongly associated with receipt of needed therapy services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)878-888
Number of pages11
JournalMaternal and child health journal
Volume20
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Access
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Health disparities
  • Special health care needs
  • Therapy services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Unmet Need for Therapy Among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Results from the 2005–2006 and 2009–2010 National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this