Survey 3: Development and Mental Health during COVID-19

Wendy Chung, M.D., Ph.D., Principal Investigator of Simons Searchlight
Date published: November 23, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to upend our lives, and we at Simons Searchlight would like to thank you for allowing us to learn how your family has been affected. Researchers around the globe are in the process of using this information to make discoveries about the needs that are unique at this time to those who have neurodevelopmental conditions.

Our findings are summarized below. The document may be downloaded as a picture (PNG) or as a printer-friendly document (PDF).

What did we find in Survey 3?

We learned that the most common services accessed by dependents were speech and language therapy, physical or occupational therapy, and medical services. Caregivers reported an increase in in-person access of these services during July 2020 and August 2020. Most caregivers reported they were either very satisfied or satisfied from these services and therapies.

How are Simons Searchlight dependents doing?

It was not known how the shutdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic would affect people who have neurodevelopmental conditions. In Survey 3, we added questions about development during this time. One in three caregivers said that their dependent experienced a regression, or loss of skills, during July 2020 and August 2020, and most were unable to regain skills by September 2020.

We do not know about the level of anxiety of Simons Searchlight dependents before the COVID-19 pandemic. During the time of this survey, about one in five caregivers reported that dependents felt afraid, scared, or anxious. In addition, three out of four caregivers reported that dependents had either excellent or very good or good emotional and mental health. This is an improvement from Survey 2.


Survey 1 summary “Impact of COVID-19 on Therapies, Services, and Medical Supports” can be found here.

Survey 2 summary “Impact of COVID-19 on Medical Supports and Caregiver Mental Health” can be found here.