Study Finds Kids Want More Info About Their Hospital
FRIDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- Excluding children from
discussions about their hospital care can make them feel scared and
angry, a new study finds.
Parents and medical professionals need to make an effort to
consult young patients and include them in decisions, said the
researchers from Dublin, Ireland.
The study authors interviewed 55 children and teens, aged 7 to
18, at three hospitals and found that the kids wanted to be
included in discussions about their care and to have their views
and concerns taken seriously. While some felt included in
discussions, most reported difficulties.
Many of the young patients relied on their parents to act as
advocates and to explain what was happening, the researchers
The investigators also found that the way health professionals
communicated and behaved was a major barrier to children being
included in discussions about their care. Most of the children said
health professionals tended to "do things" to them with very brief
or no explanations. Because of rushed consultations, many young
patients said they couldn't ask questions or offer information.
In addition, health professionals often directed information at
the parents and used language that young patients found hard to
The study is published in the August issue of the
Journal of Clinical Nursing.
"Health care organizations need to develop cultures where participation is firmly embedded, not just a desirable add-on. Communicating with children, and including them in decisions about their care, conveys respect, enhances and develops their decision-making capabilities and contributes to psychosocial well-being," study co-author Imelda Coyne, from the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Trinity College Dublin, said in a journal news release.
The Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario outlines how to
prepare your child for a hospital experience.
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