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This study was conducted in order to evaluate the effects of mental health and quality of life (QOL) in children and adolescents living in residential and foster care.
Two hundred and sixteen children and adolescents, aged 8–18 years, from residential and foster care participated. QOL was assessed using the Pediatric Quality-of-Life Inventory (PedsQL), levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms using the screen for child anxiety-related emotional disorders (SCARED) questionnaire and the short mood and feeling questionnaire (SMFQ), and general mental health through use of the strengths and difficulties questionnaire (SDQ).
The children and adolescents from residential care had significantly low QOL and more frequently had mental health problems. A stepwise linear regression was performed to test the associations between the SCARED, SMFQ and SDQ scores, and PedsQL (QOL). Anxiety, depressive symptoms and general mental difficulties account for significant variations in QOL (p < 0.001).
Mental health problems have significant negative effects on the QOL of children and adolescents living in residential and foster care.
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