Parents' Experiences of Participation in the Care of Hospitalised Children: A Qualitative Study

Lam, Lai W., Chang, Anne M., & Morrissey, Jean (2006) Parents' Experiences of Participation in the Care of Hospitalised Children: A Qualitative Study. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 43(5), pp. 535-545.

View at publisher


Background The introduction of unrestricted visiting hours has led to the encouragement of parents to stay with and participate in the care of their hospitalised child. In order to stay with the hospitalised child, parents have to be away from home or work, which in turn impacts on their personal and family life. However, no published study on parents’ experiences of childcare participation during paediatric hospitalisation has been found for a Chinese population.

Objectives This study explored Chinese parents’ experiences of their participation in taking care of their hospitalised child.

Design A qualitative exploratory design was adopted to capture parents’ experiences of participation.

Settings The study was conducted in four paediatric wards of a regional acute general hospital in the New Territories, a major geographical region of Hong Kong.

Participants Nineteen parents (16 mothers and three fathers) who had a child hospitalised for more than 48 h and identified themselves as staying comparatively longer with the child than their counterpart were recruited.

Methods Data were collection by tape-recorded semi-structured interview.

Results Four major categories that illustrated parents’ experiences of participation in childcare were identified: reasons for staying with the child, rescheduling of family's routine, expectations of nurses, and comments on facility provisions. The findings highlight parents’ desire for participation in caring for their hospitalised child, their unexpressed needs for communication and concern about the non-monetary costs of participation.

Conclusions Most parents viewed accompanying their hospitalised child as an unconditional aspect of being a parent and had a strong desire for participation. Parents’ need for communication and emotional support during their participation of childcare in paediatric unit are universal. As Chinese parents are passive in seeking help, nurses should take the initiative in assessing their needs and offering them support accordingly.

Impact and interest:

31 citations in Scopus
22 citations in Web of Science®
Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 10535
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: For more information, please refer to the journal's website (see hypertext link) or contact the author.
DOI: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2005.07.009
ISSN: 0020-7489
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Health Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 Elsevier
Deposited On: 01 Nov 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:27

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page