Transition from children’s to adult services for young adults with life-limiting conditions: A realist review of the literature.

Helen Kerr, Jayne Price, Honor Nicholl, Peter O'Halloran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
432 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract


Background

Improvements in care and treatment have led to more young adults with life-limiting conditions living beyond childhood, which means they must make the transition from children’s to adult services. This has proved a challenging process for both young adults and service providers, with complex transition interventions interacting in unpredictable ways with local contexts.


Objectives

To explain how intervention processes interact with contextual factors to help transition from children’s to adult services for young adults with life-limiting conditions.


Design

Systematic realist review of the literature.


Data sources

Literature was sourced from four electronic databases: Embase, MEDLINE, Science Direct and Cochrane Library from January 1995 to April 2016. This was supplemented with a search in Google Scholar and articles sourced from reference lists of included papers.


Review methods

Data were extracted using an adapted standardised data extraction tool which included identifying information related to interventions, mechanisms, contextual influences and outcomes. Two reviewers assessed the relevance of papers based on the inclusion criteria. Methodological rigor was assessed using the relevant Critical Appraisal Skills Programme tools.


Results

78 articles were included in the review. Six interventions were identified related to an effective transition to adult services. Contextual factors include the need for children’s service providers to collaborate with adult service providers to prepare an environment with knowledgeable staff and adequate resources. Mechanisms triggered by the interventions include a sense of empowerment and agency amongst all stakeholders.


Conclusions

Early planning, collaboration between children’s and adult service providers, and a focus on increasing the young adults’ confidence in decision-making and engaging with adult services, are vital to a successful transition. Interventions should be tailored to their context and focused not only on organisational procedures but on equipping young adults, parents/carers and staff to engage with each other effectively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-27
Number of pages27
JournalInternational Journal of Nursing Studies
Volume76
Early online date23 Jun 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Transition from children’s to adult services for young adults with life-limiting conditions: A realist review of the literature.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this