Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2023 Nov 9:e32074. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.32074. Online ahead of print.
Patients with Down syndrome have significant specialized health care needs. Our objective was to understand the needs, satisfaction, and online habits of caregivers as they care for persons with Down syndrome. A mixed-method survey was distributed through REDCap from April 2022 to June 2022 in the United States; a Spanish-translated version was distributed through SurveyMonkey from August 2022 to March 2023 in Mexico. We received 290 completed responses from the United States and 58 from caregivers in Mexico. We found that current health care options are not meeting the needs of many individuals with DS in both the United States (39.7%) and Mexico (46.6%). Caregivers expressed frustrations with the inaccessibility and inapplicability of health care information. In particular, they often found the volume of information overwhelming, given their limited medical background. Additionally, health care recommendations were not customized and lacked practical recommendations. Most caregivers in both the United States (72.1%) and Mexico (82.8%) believe it is not easy to find answers to medical questions about their loved ones with DS. Online platforms with customized, specific health information related to DS could offer innovative solutions to these unmet needs for families and primary care providers.