Report from the Working Group on Improving Public Policies and Programs Affecting Persons with Mental Retardation and Other Developmental Disabilities. Report from the Working Group on Improving Public Policies and Programs Affecting Persons with Mental Retardation and Other Developmental Disabilities : Table 18

12/01/1988

: Table 18

Re:Developmental change associated with community placement in family care or group homes
Title:Comparison of Family Care and Group Homes as Alternatives to Institutions.
Authors:Barry Willer and James Intagliata
Published:American Journal of Mental Deficiency
Date:May, 1982
Method:Three and eighty eight mentally retarded adults (mean age=46) from 5 institutions in N.Y. state who were place in family care (N=229) and group homes (N=109) were studied. Five aspects of community adjustment self care skills, adaptive behavior, community living skills, social support, and community access were evaluated to determine effective levels of behavioral adaptation. The Devereaux Behavior Rating Scale, apart from the questionnaires mailed to the clients’ principal care provider, was used as a second measure of adaptive behavior.
Summary of Findings:No significant difference was seen in the amount of improvement in self care skills regardless of placement or level of retardation. In the domain of community living skills, mildly and moderately retarded individuals tended to have more progress than severely or profoundly retarded individuals and residents of group homes showed more progress than persons in family care settings. Significant improvement in adaptive behavior was observed with individuals placed in family care homes; this was supported by results of the Devereux Behavior Rating Scale. In the domains of social support and community access, no significant differences were observed between group placements. Overall, the results indicated substantial improvement in residents’ adaptive and maladaptive behavior following placement from an institution to a community placement, but that mildly and moderately retarded individuals tended to have more reported progress than did severely/profoundly retarded individuals. There was no control group for this study so it can not be argued with evidence that these changes might not otherwise have occurred.