Could not download file: This paper is available to authorised users only.

DO PARENTS UNDERSTAND MEDICAL INFORMATION IN PEDIATRIC EMERGENCY DEPARTMENTS? A PROSPECTIVE MULTICENTER STUDY

H. Chappuy1, J.M. Treluyer2, P. Taupin1, G. Patteau1, J. Dimet3, Y.E. Claessens2, G. Cheron1

1Hospital Necker Enfants Malades APHP (FRANCE)
2Hospital Cochin Saint Vincent de Paul APHP (FRANCE)
3Ch vendee (FRANCE)
Objectives: To evaluate parents’ understanding of the medical information they receive when their child is admitted to a pediatric emergency department and to identify factors likely to affect this understanding.
Methods: Thirteen pediatric emergency departments each recruited 30 consecutive patients for a prospective multicenter study based on questionnaires with closed-ended questions. The parents and doctors completed separate self-completed questionnaires. Understanding was evaluated on the basis of four items included in the questionnaire: the indication for emergency admission, diagnosis, treatment received and seriousness of the child’s condition.
Results: This study included 380 patients. We found that 55% of the parents understood the reason for hospitalization, 78% understood the diagnosis, 92% understood the treatment, 48% understood the seriousness of the condition and 19% understood all four items. The mean number of items understood was 2.76 [SD 0.87]. Parents whose children were not in pain on arrival at the emergency department and parents who received additional information from the child’s nurse showed higher levels of understanding, respectively p=0.006 and p=0.004. Parents considering the information received to be clear also showed a better level of understanding (p=0.001).
Conclusion: This study shows that clearer information is required for the parents of children admitted to emergency departments. Assistance from nurses and optimal pain management are essential to improve this communication.