This study aims to identify factors that predict the mental health care referral of anxious children. In total, 249 children
and families, aged 8-13 years, participated: 73 children were referred with anxiety disorders to mental health care [mean
(M) age =10.28, standard deviation (SD) =1.35], 176 non-referred anxious children recruited in primary schools (M age =9.94,
SD =1.22). Child anxiety and other disorders were assessed with semi-structured interviews. Child anxiety symptoms, behavioural
problems, parental anxiety, the parenting styles overprotection, autonomy encouragement, rejection, and the family functioning
dimensions control and relational functioning, were assessed with child, father and mother report on questionnaires. The summed
interference rating of children's anxiety disorders was a predictor of referral, consistent over child and parent reports,
but not comorbidity. Most family and parenting variables did not predict referral, nor differed between the referred and non-referred
sample. Contrary to our hypothesis, maternal self-reported anxiety decreased the odds of referral and child reported parental
autonomy granting increased, while child reported overprotection decreased the odds of referral. The impairment for the child
due to the number and severity of their anxiety disorder(s) is, based on child, mother and father report associated with referral.
This indicates that those who need it most, receive clinical treatment.