Providing Children and Adolescents Opportunities for Social Interaction as a Standard of Care in Pediatric Oncology

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Abstract

Experiences with peers constitute an important aspect of socialization, and children and adolescents with cancer may experience reduced social interaction due to treatment. A literature review was conducted to investigate the evidence to support a standard of care evaluating these experiences. Sixty-four articles were reviewed using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) criteria. Moderate quality of evidence suggest that social interaction can be beneficial to increase knowledge, decrease isolation, and improve adjustment and constitute an important, unmet need. The evidence supports a strong recommendation for youth with cancer to be provided opportunities for social interaction following a careful assessment of their unique characteristics and preferences.

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