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Parents With Disabled Kids In The U.S. Lose 1.5 Billion Hours, New Study Reveals

By Alicia Carlton | Dec 29, 2016 09:10 AM EST
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(Photo : Sean Gallup/Getty Images) Katya, 5, who is diagnosed with convulsive sydrome, microcephaly and is the size of an infant, lies in a pen of coloured balls next to a severely-handicapped boy at the Vesnova Home for Invalid Children on April 3, 2016 in Vesnova village near Glusk, Belarus.

A recent study says that American families are spending 1.5 billion hours in taking care of their kids who have special needs. If calculated, this means that their service is worth $36 billion should a professional health care provider performs the job.

The United States government has a program for families who have disabled or chronically ill children and it is known as the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS). It is a part of the social service that America has for its citizens who need extra help in this department.

A parent or a guardian who is approved by the government to take care of a child with disability or a chronic illness will be paid for their service in taking care of the welfare of their own kids. Although these parents are paid, WECT's report pointed out that what they are getting is not enough since even unskilled workers get more than that if they are hired to do it instead of the parents.

According to Fox News, Dr. Mark Schuster, lead researcher of this study, said that parents might find it rewarding to manage the health of their kids but they are often not seeing the negative side. Most of the time it causes marital issues, financial problems and even their own health is jeopardized. On the other hand, there are parents who are also unpaid in taking care of their special kids and they are the ones who lose about $3,200 annually in every child that they are handling.

Schuster, who is also a professor at the Harvard Medical School and a doctor at Boston Children's Hospital, would like to give out a reminder to parents out there to make sure that they get all the help that they need. It is not easy for just one person to deal with disability and chronic illnesses, especially if this involves their own child. This is why it is important that parents do their legwork of inquiring what their state could provide them if they are in a situation like this.

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