Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

Spring 2004


Published in Great Plains Research Vol. 14, No. 1, 2004. Copyright © 2004 The Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Used by permission.


The role of parents in wraparound mental health systems of care for youth with emotional and behavioral disorders is evolving. The purpose of the present study was to identify variables that impact parents' perceptions of systems of care. Parents in a countywide system of care (N = 213) were surveyed to determine their perceptions of barriers to effective services and service priorities. Parents identified the ability to pay for services, long waiting lists and periods, and lack of information about community services and resources as their top barriers. Respondents indicated services coordination, mental health outreach, and mentoring programs were their greatest priorities. Time involved in the system of care and the number of agencies with which families were involved were variables that were related to parents' perceptions of barriers to services. Neither variable was found to impact parents' perceptions of service priorities, however.