The Distraction in Action Tool©: Feasibility and Usability in Clinical Settings

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Abstract

Purpose:

Distraction is a relatively simple, evidence-based intervention to minimize child distress during medical procedures. Timely on-site interventions that instruct parents on distraction coaching are needed. The purpose of this study was to test the feasibility and usability of the Distraction in Action Tool© (DAT©), which 1) predicts child risk for distress with a needle stick and 2) provides individualized instructions for parents on how to be a distraction coach for their child in clinical settings.

Design and Methods:

A mixed-methods descriptive design was used to test feasibility and usability of DAT in the Emergency Department and a Phlebotomy Lab at a large Midwest Academic Medical Center. Twenty parents of children ages 4–10 years requiring venipuncture and clinicians performing 13 of those procedures participated. Participants completed an evaluation and participated in a brief interview.

Results:

The average age of the children was 6.8 years, and 80% of parent participants were mothers. Most parents reported the DAT was not difficult to use (84.2%), understandable (100%), and they had a positive experience (89.5%). Clinicians thought DAT was helpful (100%) and did not cause a meaningful delay in workflow (92%).

Conclusion:

DAT can be used by parents and clinicians to assess their children's risk for procedure related distress and learn distraction techniques to help their children during needle stick procedures.

Practice Implications:

DAT for parents is being disseminated via social media and an open-access website. Further research is needed to disseminate and implement DAT in community healthcare settings.

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