Degree Name

Master of Science (Hons.)


Department of Nursing


This study examined consumer perceptions of services for people with severe and profound intellectual disabilities in the Illawarra area. The nature and severity of the disability involved necessitated the use of family members, staff and advocates as sources of information. A total of 147 clients participated and a representative of each client (with one exception) was interviewed. They were asked to identify all services used by the client in the previous five years and to rate their level of satisfaction with these services on a 7-point Likert scale. They were then asked to identify factors important to them in rating these services (sources of satisfaction and dissatisfaction) and to nominate any services they needed but that were not available. A wide variety of types of services was identified as being used, with the most used services being various medical services and (for children) schools. Services were generally rated highly. Ratings given by family member respondents were compared with ratings given by staff respondents. Significant differences were identified between these groups of respondents for adults in relation to a number of service types, with family respondents rating services more highly than staff respondents. No significant differences were identified between these groups of respondents for children.