Article

Family-clinician interactions in children's health services: A secondary analysis of occupational therapists' practice descriptions

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Abstract

Effective family-clinician interactions are important for good health outcomes. Two types of interactions are consistently recommended: relational (e.g. listening, empathy, and respect) and participatory (e.g. shared decision-making, planning and problem-solving), but there is little specific guidance on how to implement these interactions in practice. To identify specific, practice-based examples of relational and participatory family-clinician interactions in children's occupational therapy. A qualitative secondary analysis was used. The data consisted of a list of occupational therapists' self-reported practice actions (n = 217) and direct quotes describing their content and context. The practice actions were categorized into a range of relational and participatory family-centred interactions using a modified framework analysis. Of the 217 practice actions, the majority [121 (55.76%)] did not describe examples of therapists implementing family-clinician interactions. Of the remaining practice actions, 19 (8.76%) described 'relational' interactions (e.g. 'Listen to carer', 'Gather perspectives from others'); 47 (21.66%) described 'participatory' interactions (e.g. 'Identify the family's goals and priorities', 'Allow the family to choose'); 2 (0.92%) described both ('Take guidance from carers'); and 28 (12.9%) were excluded from the analysis. A range of relational and participatory interactions were identified. Descriptions of participatory interactions were more frequent than descriptions of relational interactions, and overall the therapists described their family-clinician interactions less frequently than their other practice actions. The specific, real-life examples of different types of interactions identified in the study can be used as a basis for reflection on practice and developing more specific guidance.

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... Such transactions, whilst believed to be key to efficient services, do not work for people and the inevitable variation in public services. 34 Adopting a more interpersonal view of human behaviour 34,35 may lead to a different set of assumptions whereby those who do not follow the transactions specified may be the families most in need, or in crisis, who require more relational care 35 and suspension of the 'rules' for a more personalised pathway to change. 34 Changing the assumptions upon which the content of pre-appointment materials is based requires system-level change, driven through organisational policy and culture. ...
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Text, multimedia, and other qualitative data are important sources of information for HCI researchers and practitioners. Probably the most unique characteristic of qualitative data analysis is that it involves human coding. The absence of numeric data and direct measures makes qualitative data analysis more susceptible to biased interpretation or subjective manipulation. Therefore, it is critical to adopt well established procedures and techniques to ensure high-quality analysis that is both valid and reliable. Although there is disagreement regarding its implementation process and guidelines, grounded theory is widely used for qualitative data analysis. When analyzing text content, we need to develop a set of coding categories that accurately summarizes the data or describes the underlying relationships or patterns buried in the data. Depending on the specific context of the research question, a priori coding or emergent coding may be used to generate the coding categories. In order to produce high-quality coding, multiple coders are usually recommended to code the data. Reliability control measures such as Cohen's Kappa should be calculated and evaluated throughout the coding process. The basic guidelines for analyzing text content also apply to multimedia content.
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This book draws on contemporary occupational therapy theory and research to provide occupational therapy students and clinicians with a practical resource on implementing occupation centred practice with children. Each chapter has specific objectives and uses case studies to demonstrate the clinical realities and applications of each of the topics addressed. Best practice guidelines are provided along with a summary of recommendations drawn from the relevant theories, occupational therapy philosophy and existing research. The book aims specifically to be practice based.
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Purpose: Clinicians' actions impact the patient care process and pathway. This study identified clinicians' actions associated with successful care processes in one community healthcare setting, children's occupational therapy. Method: A secondary analysis in a form of a quantitative content analysis was conducted of 47 interview transcripts, describing outcomes and therapists' (n = 25) self-reported actions in 25 "successful" and 22 "unsuccessful" care processes. The successful processes were those with positive outcomes (clear and coherent process with easy discharge; achieved patient goals and positive patient-clinician relationships). The transcripts were coded for presence of therapists' actions and non-actions using content analysis; and actions associated with success of the process were identified by Pearson Chi-square test. Results: In total 207 actions were identified. These clustered around six areas: assessment, setting goals and planning actions, treatment, review, discharging, and managing processes and relationships. The key actions associated with successful processes were: gather perspectives from others at assessment (χ(2) = 6.65, p < 0.01); identify therapy goals (13.16, p < 0.01); agree/communicate plans, roles and responsibilities (9.10, p < 0.01); involve the child and parents in treatment (6.36, p = 0.01); adapt physical environment (6.01, p = 0.01) and make comparisons between the baseline, current and target levels when reviewing progress (6.36, p = 0.01). Conclusions: The actions identified are congruent with literatures about patient involvement and goal achievement. Specific hypotheses about the mechanisms by which the identified actions may relate to care process are presented.
Article
Individual therapists' behaviour contributes to overall caseload management in therapy services. Therapists' caseload management (i.e. actions in relation to assessment, treatment and discharging) is likely to relate to their beliefs about caseload management; it may be possible to change therapists' caseload management by changing their beliefs. This study explored children's occupational therapists' beliefs about caseload management with a view to designing a caseload management intervention. Twenty-five therapists from six NHS Scotland Health Boards were interviewed using a semi-structured format. Interviews were transcribed verbatim, and the interview transcripts were analysed for emerging themes. A proportion of transcripts were independently read and coded, and the themes were validated through critical discussion. Key issues emerged concerning therapists' beliefs about their responsibilities, the aims of therapy and the structure of the therapy process. Therapists expressed a strong sense of professional duty/responsibility, but the interpretations of what this duty/responsibility was differed between therapists. For example, therapists expressed highly contrasting beliefs about the goals and purpose of therapy and the ways in which therapy processes should be structured. Some therapists promoted an approach structured around clients' goals, while others focused more on relationship building. Therapists' beliefs about caseload management differ considerably; these differences could translate to variation in therapists' intentions and behaviours. Implications for practice, policy and future research were identified, as were implications for the way clinicians' caseload management is theorized.
Article
Family-centred service, functional goal setting and co-ordination of a child's move between programmes are important concepts of rehabilitation services for children with cerebral palsy identified in the literature. We examined whether these three concepts could be objectively identified in programmes providing services to children with cerebral palsy in Alberta, Canada. Programme managers (n= 37) and occupational and physical therapists (n= 54) representing 59 programmes participated in individual 1-h semi-structured interviews. Thirty-nine parents participated in eleven focus groups or two individual interviews. Evidence of family-centred values in mission statements and advisory boards was evaluated. Therapists were asked to identify three concepts of family-centred service and to complete the Measures of Process of Care for Service Providers. Therapists also identified therapy goals for children based on clinical case scenarios. The goals were coded using the components of the International Classification of Functioning Disability and Health. Programme managers and therapists discussed the processes in their programmes for goal setting and for preparing children and their families for their transition to other programmes. Parents reflected on their experiences with their child's rehabilitation related to family-centredness, goal setting and co-ordination between programmes. All respondents expressed commitment to the three concepts, but objective indicators of family-centred processes were lacking in many programmes. In most programmes, the processes to implement the three concepts were informal rather than standardized. Both families and therapists reported limited access to general information regarding community supports. Lack of formal processes for delivery of family-centred service, goal-setting and co-ordination between children's programmes may result in inequitable opportunities for families to participate in their children's rehabilitation despite attending the same programme. Standardized programme processes and policies may provide a starting point to ensure that all families have equitable opportunities to participate in their child's rehabilitation programme.
To determine whether longer waiting times for rehabilitation were associated with deterioration in child functional status and/or quality of life. Parents of 124 children (mean age 45 months) with physical disabilities (e.g., cerebral palsy, global developmental delay, spina bifida) who were referred to pediatric rehabilitation centers were interviewed every three months, from referral until admission into the rehabilitation program. Information from parental interviews included socio-demographics, parental empowerment (Family Empowerment Scale), function (WeeFIM: Functional Independence Measure for Children), and quality of life (PedsQL). Data on date of referral, age, gender, and diagnosis were obtained from hospital databases. Half of the sample waited more than 9.1 months (95% confidence interval: 6.5-16.1) for admission to a public rehabilitation program. A total of 42% paid for some private services while waiting. Over the waiting period, there was statistically significant improvement in WeeFIM cognition and total scores but not in mobility scores. PedsQL psychosocial summary score declined over the waiting period (p< .05). Longer wait times for rehabilitation were associated with declining psychosocial quality of life. Reducing waiting times for rehabilitation services may allow rehabilitation specialists to address psychosocial problems for these children.
Article
The literature on communication, compliance, and patient satisfaction is selectively reviewed. As in earlier reviews, it is concluded that dissatisfaction with communication remains widespread, as does lack of compliance with medical advice. Related factors include poor transmission of information from patient to doctor, low understandability of communications addressed to the patient, and low levels of recall of information by patients. There does not appear to be any evidence that provision of additional information leads to adverse reactions by patients. Theoretical approaches to communication and compliance are described, and it is concluded that these should be used to direct future research.
Article
The evidence as to whether patient-centredness is associated with beneficial physical and psychological outcomes is inconsistent. This review of published research on health care communication in chronic illness investigates whether (i) studies of patient-centred consultations use distinctive concepts, (ii) different concepts are differentially associated with health outcomes. Studies of patients with a chronic illness consulting a health professional were included if they measured health professional-patient interaction and a physical or psychological outcome. Thirty studies were identified, falling into two, reliably distinct, categories. In the first, health professionals took the patient's perspective and in the second, they sought to "activate" the patient. The 10 studies taking the latter approach were more consistently associated with good physical health outcomes than were the 20 studies taking the former approach. The suggestion that different types of patient-centredness have different associations with physical health outcomes should be investigated further in experimental studies.
Article
Given the fluidity with which the term shared decision making (SDM) is used in teaching, assessment and research, we conducted a focused and systematic review of articles that specifically address SDM to determine the range of conceptual definitions. In April 2005, we ran a Pubmed (Medline) search to identify articles published through 31 December 2003 with the words shared decision making in the title or abstract. The search yielded 681 citations, 342 of which were about SDM in the context of physician-patient encounters and published in English. We read and reviewed the full text of all 342 articles, and got any non-redundant references to SDM, which yielded an additional 76 articles. Of the 418 articles examined, 161 (38.5%) had a conceptual definition of SDM. We identified 31 separate concepts used to explicate SDM, but only "patient values/preferences" (67.1%) and "options" (50.9%) appeared in more than half the 161 definitions. Relatively few articles explicitly recognized and integrated previous work. Our review reveals that there is no shared definition of SDM. We propose a definition that integrates the extant literature base and outlines essential elements that must be present for patients and providers to engage in the process of SDM. The integrative definition of SDM is intended to provide a useful foundation for describing and operationalizing SDM in further research.
Article
To examine the effect of realized access to care (problems getting care, access to needed care) on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in the California State Children's Health Insurance Program. This was a prospective cohort study (n = 4,925; 70.5% [3438] had complete data). Surveys were taken at enrollment and after 1 and 2 years in the program. Parents and children reported HRQOL (PedsQL 4.0 Generic Core Scales). Repeated-measures analysis accounted for within-person correlation and adjusted for baseline PedsQL, baseline realized access, race/ethnicity, language, chronic health condition, and having a regular physician. Realized access to care during the prior year was related to HRQOL for each subsequent year. Foregone care and problems getting care were associated with decrements of 3.5 (P < .001) and 4.5 (P < .001) points for parent proxy-report PedsQL and with decrements of 3.2 (P < .001) and 4.4 (P < .001) points for child self-report PedsQL. Improved realized access resulted in higher PedsQL scores, continued realized access resulted in sustained PedsQL scores, and foregone care resulted in cumulative declines in PedsQL scores. Realized access to care is associated with statistically significant and clinically meaningful changes in HRQOL in children enrolled in the California State Children's Health Insurance Program.
Article
To review systematically qualitative studies, which were found during a literature search for a Cochrane systematic review of the use of family centred care in children's hospitals. Family centred care has become a cornerstone of paediatric practice, however, its effectiveness is not known. No single definition exists, rather a list of elements that constitute family centred care. However, it is recognized to involve the parents in care planning for a child in health services. A new definition is presented here. The papers were found in wide range of databases, by hand searching and by contacting the authors where necessary, using terms given in detail in the protocol in the Cochrane Library, in 2004. Qualitative studies could not be used for statistical analysis, but are still important to the review and so are described separately in this paper. Negotiation between staff and families, perceptions held by both parents and staff roles influenced the delivery of family centred care. A sub-theme of cost of family centred care to families and staffs was discovered and this included both financial and emotional costs. Further research is needed to generate evidence about family centred care in situations arising from modern models of care in which family centred care is thought to be an inherent part, but which leave families with the care of sick children with little or no support. Family centred care is said to be used widely in practice. More research is needed to ensure that is it being implemented correctly.
Article
In the last decade, the clinician-patient relationship has become more of a partnership. There is growing interest in shared decision-making (SDM) in which the clinician and patient go through all phases of the decision-making process together, share treatment preferences, and reach an agreement on treatment choice. The purpose of this review is to determine the extent, quality, and consistency of the evidence about the effectiveness of SDM. This is a systematic review of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) comparing SDM interventions with non-SDM interventions. Eleven RCTs met the required criteria, and were included in this review. The methodological quality of the studies included in this review was high overall. Five RCTs showed no difference between SDM and control, one RCT showed no short-term effects but showed positive longer-term effects, and five RCTs reported a positive effect of SDM on outcome measures. The two studies included of people with mental healthcare problems reported a positive effect of SDM. Despite the considerable interest in applying SDM clinically, little research regarding its effectiveness has been done to date. It has been argued that SDM is particularly suitable for long-term decisions, especially in the context of a chronic illness, and when the intervention contains more than one session. Our results show that under such circumstances, SDM can be an effective method of reaching a treatment agreement. Evidence for the effectiveness of SDM in the context of other types of decisions, or in general, is still inconclusive. Future studies of SDM should probably focus on long-term decisions.
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