Parent/care givers' perception of the efficacy of a student based occupational therapy service with autistic spectrum disorder children

Bale, Rebecca
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This qualitative study explores the perceptions of parents/caregivers of the efficacy of a student based occupational therapy service with children with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD). Key informant interviews were conducted with ten randomly selected parents/caregivers of children with ASD receiving occupational therapy from final year students of the University of the Witwatersrand. Data analysis generated six themes: Understanding of Occupational Therapy; Limitations of students as therapists; Lack of partnership; Inadequate structure of the program; Inefficacy of the service and, Desperate need of help. The study showed that the student based occupational therapy service was not effective because students were not in a position to provide a comprehensive treatment programme for the children. The findings highlight the need for the provision of a full time occupational therapy service at the CDC. A follow up study to explore experiences of students in the management of ASD is recommended.
M.Sc. (Occupational Therapy), Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, 2009
autism , student based occupational therapy , parent/care giver perception