• childhood disability;
  • family-centred service;
  • survey;
  • structural equation modelling


Background  The provision of family-centred services (FCS) emphasizes a partnership between parents and service providers so that families are involved in every aspect of services for their child. There is evidence that providing FCS is associated with improvements in parents’ satisfaction with services, decreased parental stress, and positive child outcomes.

Methods  The purpose of this study was to examine factors that are most important in determining parent perceptions of the family centredness of care and parent satisfaction with service. A cross-sectional survey was completed by 494 parents, 324 service providers, and 15 CEOs from 16 organizations delivering children's rehabilitation services. Analyses were completed using a structural equation modelling approach.

Results  Survey return rates ranged from 77 to 94%. Findings indicate that the principal determinants of parent satisfaction with services are the family-centred culture at the organization and parent perceptions of FCS. Parent satisfaction with services was also influenced by the number of places where services were received and the number of health and development problems experienced by their child.

Conclusion  Parent satisfaction with services is strongly influenced by the perception that services are more family centred, fewer places where services were received and fewer health and development problems for their child. Ways in which organizations can improve satisfaction through carrying out family-centred behaviours are discussed.