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The psychosocial experience of parents receiving care closer to home for their ill child

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Current health policy in England regarding the management of childhood illness advocates for care to be delivered as close to home as possible. The aim of this article is to report findings from a qualitative component of a larger study evaluating models of care closer to home (CCTH) for children and young people who are ill. The focus is on parents’ psychosocial experience of receiving CCTH for their ill child. A qualitative case study design was used, with four Primary Care Trusts in England as the case study sites. In‐depth, semi‐structured interviews were conducted with 27 parents and one extended family caregiver of children using CCTH services within the case study sites. Interviews were conducted face‐to‐face and audio‐recorded with permission. Data were collected in 2009. There was an overall preference for CCTH over hospital‐based care where possible. The parents in this study experienced differing levels of responsibility as part of this care, and responded to this in different ways. Being supported emotionally and socially by practitioners was an important part of receiving CCTH for parents, especially when they had increased responsibility as part of this care. Developing relationships with practitioners appeared to be a medium through which parents received support. If the provision of CCTH continues to expand in line with current policy, provision of support for parents should be considered a fundamental aspect of service development.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Social Policy Research Unit, University of York, Heslington, UK 2: Department of Health Sciences, University of York, Heslington, UK

Publication date: November 1, 2011

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