The study aim was to determine the extent and determinants of reporting depressive symptoms in caregivers for persons with intellectual disabilities based on assessment of the 9-item Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9). A cross-sectional study was conducted, recruiting 455 caregivers for adults with ID who were providing care in community residences, with complete PHQ-9 data being analyzed. The results indicated that the mean of each item scored on the PHQ-9 varied from 0.3 (Q9) to 1.1 (Q4). For two items (Q3 - "sleeping difficulties" and Q4 - "fatigue"), the respondents reported occurrence during several days in the previous two weeks. However, after scrutinizing the distribution of each item in the PHQ-9, 3.3-14.5% respondents reported that each item happened nearly every day, and 4.0-17.8% expressed that each happened more than half of the days in the previous two weeks. With respect to difficulties examined on the PHQ, 47% of cases expressed that it was somewhat difficult, 8.2% expressed that it was very difficult, and 4.5% felt that it was extremely difficult to work, care for things at home, or get along with others. Finally, a logistic regression model revealed that only one factor of self-perceived health status (fair/poor vs. excellent/very good, OR = 7.519, 95% CI = 3.03-18.68, p < 0.001) exhibited a statistically significant correlation with depressive symptom occurrence (PHQ-9 score ≧ 10) among the caregivers. The study highlights the need to strengthen appropriate health initiatives for monitoring mental health status and to provide necessary services for community caregivers for adults with ID.
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