Do parents understand the medical information provided in paediatric emergency departments? A prospective multicenter study

Authors

  • Hélène Chappuy,

    1. Université Paris Descartes, Service d’Urgences Pédiatriques, Hôpital Necker Enfants Malades, Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France
    2. EA3620, Université Paris Descartes, Paris, France
    3. Unité de Recherche Clinique et Centre d’Investigation Clinique Paris Centre Descartes, Paris, France
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  • Pierre Taupin,

    1. Université Paris Descartes, Service de biostatistiques, Hôpital Necker Enfants Malades, Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France
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  • Jérôme Dimet,

    1. Unité de Recherche Clinique, CHD de Vendée, La Roche sur Yon, France
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  • Yann Erick Claessens,

    1. Department of Emergency Medicine, Centre Hospitalier Princesse Grace, Monaco, France
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  • Jean-Marc Tréluyer,

    1. EA3620, Université Paris Descartes, Paris, France
    2. Unité de Recherche Clinique et Centre d’Investigation Clinique Paris Centre Descartes, Paris, France
    3. Pharmacologie Clinique, Groupe hospitalier Cochin, Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France
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  • Gerard Chéron,

    1. Université Paris Descartes, Service d’Urgences Pédiatriques, Hôpital Necker Enfants Malades, Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France
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  • the GFRUP

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    • GFRUP (Groupe Francophone de Réanimation & Urgences Pédiatriques): P. Babe, O. Brissaud, P. Brosset, B. Chevallier, S Escoda, S. Faesch, D. Floret, M. Gehri, H. Haas, V Hue, MP Jaby-Sergent, E. Marc, A Martinot, JC Mercier, O. Mory, N. Parez, L. Pedespan, D. Ploin, A. Smail, V. Soussan, G. Teyssier, C. Vitoux.


Helene Chappuy, Service d’Urgences Pédiatriques Hôpital Necker Enfants Malades Assistance Publique Hôpitaux de Paris, 149 rue de Sèvres, 75743 Paris Cedex 15, France.
Tel: +331 44 49 42 92 |
Fax: +331 44 49 42 99 |
Email: helene.chappuy@nck.aphp.fr

Abstract

Aim:  We evaluated the extent to which parents understood the medical information about hospitalization of their child in an emergency department and looked for characteristics likely to increase the risk of poor comprehension.

Methods:  Prospective multicenter study in thirteen paediatric emergency departments. The parents and doctors completed questionnaires based on closed-ended questions with a common core of four items: reasons of hospitalization, diagnosis, treatment and seriousness of child condition. We evaluated concordance between parents and doctor answers for these items by comparing their responses.

Results:  This study included 380 parents. Percentage of concordance was 55% for the reason of hospitalization, 78% for the diagnosis, 92% for the treatment, 48% for the seriousness of the condition and 19% for all four items. The mean number of concordant items was 2.76 (CI 95%, 2.66–2.86). Parents whose children seemed not in pain and parents who received additional information from the nurse showed significantly slightly higher levels of concordance with doctor’s answers (2.98 vs 2.66, p = 0.006 and 2.89 vs 2.60, p = 0.004, respectively).

Conclusion:  This study shows that improvements are required in the clarity of the information delivered to the parents. The assistance of nurses and optimal pain management may help to improve communication.

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