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Implications of Employment Changes Caused by COVID-19 on Mental Health and Work-Related Psychological Need Satisfaction of Autistic Employees: A Mixed-Methods Longitudinal Study

Authors
  • Goldfarb, Yael1
  • Gal, Eynat1
  • Golan, Ofer2, 3
  • 1 University of Haifa,
  • 2 Bar-Ilan University,
  • 3 University of Cambridge,
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Feb 26, 2021
Pages
1–14
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s10803-021-04902-3
PMID: 33635422
PMCID: PMC7908957
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

This mixed-methods study examined longitudinal data, assessing Israeli autistic adults' employment-related changes, resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. In the quantitative phase, 23 participants answered a survey before and during COVID-19, assessing work-status, mental health, and work-related psychological need satisfaction. The qualitative phase included interviews with ten employed participants. Results indicate a significant decrease in mental health of participants who lost their jobs during COVID-19, while participants who continued to physically attend work, maintained pre-COVID-19 levels on all assessed variables. Participants who transitioned to remote-work from home, showed a marginally significant deterioration in mental health and a significant decrease in satisfaction of work-related psychological needs for competence and autonomy. Qualitative accounts supplement these findings and portray advantages and disadvantages of remote-work. Supplementary Information The online version contains supplementary material available at 10.1007/s10803-021-04902-3.

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