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Paediatric ENT surgery : its psychological impact and some factors associated with that impact

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posted on 15.12.2014, 10:46 by Peter W. Reid
Questionnaires were administered, before, during and after hospitalisation, to the parents of 49 children (aged 3.4-11.4 years) undergoing ENT surgery. Nurses also completed a measure of child behavioural upset during each child's admission. Although there was little evidence from the questionnaires that hospitalisation had adversely affected the children's behaviour (rs = .67 p < .0001), the experience heightened the perception, especially in parents of younger children, about their child's general vulnerability to illness (pr (45) = -.40, p < .005). The data also showed that when parents reported previous hospital contact for what they at that time had considered serious child health concerns, the parents were more anxious at the pre-hospital ENT appointment (z = 1.92, p < .05). Parents' ratings of their children's behaviour problems and parents' perceptions about their children's general vulnerability to illness, both measured before admission, were positively associated with parents' ratings of their children's distress during the hospitalisation (rs (46) = .50, p < .0005; rs (46) = .58, p < .0001, respectively). However, the agreement between parents and nurses about children's behavioural distress during the hospitalisation was very modest (rs (43) = .3 p < .05). These findings have implications for examining and improving the quality of service provision.;Almost half of the families were also interviewed two weeks after discharge, about their hospital experience. Qualitative analysis of the interview material identified six significant issues; the inadequacy of information supplied by the hospital; the diversity of information sources accessed by families; the implicit rather than negotiated involvement of parents in the care of their hospitalised child; the attitude and responsiveness of the hospital staff; the adequacy of hospital facilities and unexpected psychological trauma. These themes provide a rich source of information about the experience of parents of hospitalised children and identify areas for service quality improvement.


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Clinical Psychology

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University of Leicester

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