Developing a unified language for children’s nurses, children and their families in the United Kingdom


G.Lyte University of Manchester School of Nursing, Midwifery & Health Visiting, Coupland III Building, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PL, UK (tel.: 0161 275 5339).


•  This paper presents a taxonomy of Infant, Child and Adolescent (ICA) nursing diagnoses and clinical outcomes that has been developed with the co-operation of nurses caring for children in the United Kingdom.

•  Three focus group interviews were conducted in one acute care NHS trust in London (referred to as the host trust in this paper) in 1998/99, in which participants were asked to consider nursing and family factors relevant for identifying and providing care.

•  A total of 28 ICA diagnoses, including definitions, defining characteristics and outcomes, were identified for clinical testing and included in the ICA taxonomy.

•  The ICA diagnostic labels and outcomes for care were further tested for their relevance for clinical practice in a Delphi Survey carried out in 1999 and their use in clinical practice began in 1999.

•  This research augments the findings from an initial Delphi survey carried out in 1993 and case study research in 1996.

•  The previous research initiated the development of a unified language for children’s nurses, children and their families, to aid communication and decision-making.

•  Implications of this and future research for clinical practice, nationally and internationally, are also discussed.