Latino children with autism/DD need quality health care

By Susan Parish, PhD, MSW
The Lurie Institute for Disability Policy, Brandeis University
Sandra Magana, MSW, PhD
University of Illinois at Chicago

Latino children with autism and developmental disabilities (DD) have worse health care access, service utilization and quality than White children with autism and DD.

What did you do in your research?
We analyzed data from the 2005-06 National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs.

What did you find out?
We found that quality of care mediates health care service utilization for Latino children with autism/DD. In other words, when Latino children with autism receive high quality care, they use more health care services. Using appropriate services improves children's well-being.

What are the take-home messages?
Health care providers need to improve the quality of care they give Latino children with autism and their families. Providers need to partner with parents, spend adequate time with them during medical visits, and deliver culturally appropriate care. Improving the quality of care Latino children with autism/DD receive is an important public health objective.

To learn more about these findings contact
Susan Parish or read the Project Brief.

Full Journal Article
Parish, S., Magana, S., Rose, R., Timberlake, M, & Swaine, J.G. (2012). Health care of Latino children with autism and other developmental disabilities: Quality of provider interaction mediates utilization. American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 17(4), 304-315.