A qualitative systematic review of the reasons for parental attendance at the emergency department with children presenting with minor illness

Ahmet Butun, Pippa Hemingway

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Abstract
Introduction: Over 5 million children attend the Emergency Department (ED) annually in England with an ever-increasing paediatric emergency caseload echoed globally. Approximately 60% of children present with illness and the majority have non-urgent illness creating burgeoning pressures on children’s ED and this crisis resonates globally. To date no qualitative systematic review exists that focuses on the parental reasons for childhood attendance at the ED in this subgroup.

Aim: To identify parental reasons for attending ED for their children presenting with minor illness.

Method: A qualitative systematic review was conducted against inclusion/exclusion criteria. Five electronic databases and key journals were searched in June 2015.

Findings: 471 studies were identified and following study selection, 4 qualitative studies were included. Nine themes were identified e.g. dissatisfaction with family medical services, perceived advantages of ED and ‘child suffering’ with novel and insightful subthemes of ‘hereditary anxiety’, ‘taking it off our hands’, ED as a ‘magical place’.

Conclusion: This novel qualitative systematic review examined parental attendance presenting with childhood minor illness of interest to emergency care reformers and clinicians. ED attendance is complex and multifactorial but parents provide vital insight to ED reformers on parental reasons for ED attendance in this sub group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-62
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Emergeny Nursing
Volume36
Early online date01 Aug 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2018

Keywords

  • Parental reasons
  • Minor illness
  • Non-urgent
  • Attendance at ED
  • ED utilisation
  • Qualitative studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Health Professions(all)
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Emergency Medical Services
  • Emergency

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