Background There is evidence in the literature that parents of children who have a developmental disability experience an increased risk of mental health problems.
Methods This study used population-level administrative data from the Ministry of Health, British Columbia, Canada, to assess the mental health of parents of children who have a developmental disability compared with the mental health of parents of children who do not have a developmental disability. Population-level and individual explanatory variables available in the data were included in the models.
Results At a population level, the study found strong evidence that parents of children who have a developmental disability experience higher odds of depression or other mental health diagnoses compared with parents of children who do not have a developmental disability. Age of the parent at birth of the child, income and location of healthcare services were all associated with outcomes.
Conclusion Parents of children who have a developmental disability may be in need of programmes and services that support their mental health.
- mental health
- record linkage
- learning disability
- maternal health
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Contributors SMM conducted the research and wrote the paper. KM and MH provided oversight and expert advice for the research and the written paper.
Funding This study is funded by the BC Ministry of Health Social Determinants (grant number 36800-54061).
Disclaimer All inferences, opinions and conclusions drawn in this paper are those of the authors, and do not reflect the opinions or policies of the data steward.
Competing interests SMM received funding through a BC Ministry of Health grant.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Ethics approval The BC Ministry of Health approved use of the data through PopData. Ethics approval was granted by the University of Victoria Human Research Ethics Board (No 15-043).
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Data availability statement Data may be obtained from a third party and are not publicly available.
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