Background Research studies into the effect of therapies have shown that a good relationship between the client and his caregiver is a key factor in a positive treatment outcome.
Methods The nominal group technique (NGT) has been used in this study to discover what clients with intellectual disabilities feel contributes to a successful working relationship with caregivers.
Results The research reveals that from the clients’ perspective the way in which caregivers deliver their support (a reliable, empathic and non-patronising attitude) is important. The particular types of support seem to be less influential in terms of treatment success. Furthermore, the results show that the clients’ preferred ways of receiving help correspond with the basic assumptions in solution focused brief therapy.
Conclusions This research project demonstrates that the NGT is a valuable instrument in bringing to the fore of the opinions and priorities of clients with intellectual disabilities. Comparisons with studies into the client-professional working relationships among children and adults without intellectual disabilities reveal similarities to the outcomes of this research project.