It was found that 6 out of 10 families with developmental disabilities considered even extreme choices due to the burden of care.
On the 5th, Kang Seon-woo, a member of the National Assembly’s Health and Welfare Committee, and the Democratic Party of Korea released the results of a survey of 4,333 families with developmental disabilities from the 15th to the 19th of last month.
As a result, it was found that 59.8% of families with developmental disabilities were contemplating extreme choices. More than half of those who pondered the extreme choice said ‘the burden of supporting a child (family) with developmental disabilities for the rest of their life’ (56.3%). Next, 31.1% cited physical and mental difficulties due to support for children with developmental disabilities, and 6.7% cited economic problems.
In fact, many parents or families with developmental disabilities were experiencing difficulties in daily life and social life in general, such as complaining of physical difficulties (41.1%) and mental difficulties (47.3%).
In particular, only 2% of the families who used the government-provided counseling support service for parents with developmental disabilities among those who were contemplating extreme choices. 43.1% said they had never received any counseling. The reason for not using parental counseling support was ‘I didn’t know there was a service (28.8%)’.
95.7% of all persons with developmental disabilities who participated in the survey answered that they needed more than a certain level of support to maintain their daily life. 26.3% of respondents said they needed support for more than 20 hours a day. ‘More than 12 hours’ accounted for 27%, and ‘more than 6 hours to less than 12 hours’ accounted for 22.8%.
However, only 0.1% of the respondents received activity support services for more than 20 hours a day.
The ‘establishment of a 24-hour support system’ was selected as a necessary policy to solve the successive deaths of people with developmental disabilities and their families. A whopping 71.9% of the respondents wanted this policy. There were also responses such as strengthening financial support (16.9%) or strengthening family support (6.2%).
Rep. Kang Seon-woo said, “Families with developmental disabilities are experiencing very serious physical and mental stress due to the burden of care.