Effectiveness of a tool to improve role negotiation and communication between parents and nurses

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Abstract

Aim:

To evaluate the effectiveness of a documentary tool designed to formalise role negotiation and improve communication between parents and nurses.

Methods:

A quasi-experimental pre/post-intervention study design was used to determine nurses' perceptions of the effectiveness of a documentary tool in facilitating nurse-parent discussion about parental desire for involvement in the daily care activities of their child while in hospital. Nurses in randomly selected wards were assigned to usual practice (control group) or the implementation of a Negotiated Care Tool (intervention group) during a three-month period.

Results:

Pre- and post-intervention surveys were completed by 69 nurses. The tool was associated with attitudinal changes in the desired direction for 12 of the 24 nurse responses: nurses in the intervention group were significantly more likely to include parents in decision making (p=0.007); encourage parents to ask questions during their child's hospital stay (p=0.005); and invite extended family members to participate in care with parental permission (p=0.03).

Conclusion:

The Negotiated Care Tool raised staff awareness of the importance of effective communication and negotiation of care with parents in busy clinical practice areas. Transparent communication and negotiation of roles between nurses and parents are integral to family-centred care provision.

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