Transition to adult-oriented health care: perspectives of youth and adults with complex physical disabilities.

School of Rural and Northern Health, Laurentian University, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.
Physical & Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics (Impact Factor: 1.42). 11/2009; 29(4):345-61. DOI: 10.3109/01942630903245994
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The transition to adulthood is extremely difficult for individuals with disabilities. We sought to explore the specific issue of transition to adult-oriented health care in a Canadian context.
We conducted semi-structured individual interviews with 15 youth and 15 adults with cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and acquired brain injuries of childhood, and their parents (n = 30). Respondents discussed their health care services, their experience with clinical transition, and contributing factors. We analyzed the transcripts using qualitative methods.
All participants identified challenges in transition, including: lack of access to health care; lack of professionals' knowledge; lack of information and uncertainty regarding the transition process. Two solutions were identified: early provision of detailed information and more extensive support throughout the clinical transition process.
The challenges of clinical transition were universal. More extensive information and support is needed during transition to ensure an efficient move to appropriate adult-oriented health care.

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