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Youth hospitalized in a paediatric ward - experiences of adolescents with congenital heart disease

Authors Jenny Högstedt
Josefin Meldo
Ewa-Lena Bratt
Published in 46th Nordic Meeting in Paediatric Cardiology, 21-23 September 2016. Båstad, Sweden
Publication year 2016
Published at Institute of Health and Care Sciences
Language en
Keywords adolescents, congenital heart disease, pediatric care, hospitalization
Subject categories Nursing


Background: As a result of an increasingly advanced and highly specialized medical care new groups of surviving patients arise who need continued hospital treatment, for example children with congenital heart disease. These adolescents struggle, besides with medical and physical issues, also with aspects of identity and independence. The specific needs, identified in earlier studies, of adolescents in hospitals are age-appropriate entertainment, contact with friends, undisturbed space, and that nurses give them time for needs specific for adolescents. There is a lack of knowledge about adolescent’s experiences of being hospitalized in a setting which is adapted to younger children. Aim: To explore experiences of adolescents with congenital heart disease who were hospitalized in a ward for infants, children and adolescents aged 0-18 years. Method: Seven adolescents, age 14-18 years with heart disease, who had been admitted to the ward for at least seven days during the last two years, were recruited. Data collection was performed through telephone interviews. A qualitative content analysis was used to analyze the transcribed text. Results: The analysis showed that. The patients experienced the attitude of the staff as positive, which increased their ability to cope with the hospitalization period and their disease. Some did not consider themselves very active in participating in their care, but did not on the other hand feel this was a problem. It was also found that there were shortcomings in the physical and psychosocial health care environment, which was obviously more adapted for younger patients. Conclusions: The most important factors for a positive experience of being cared for was the nurse-patient relationship in terms of communication and participation, as well as the physical facilities of the ward

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