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Child Care Health Dev. 2012 Nov;38(6):789-97. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2214.2011.01335.x. Epub 2011 Oct 21.

Ensuring successful admission to hospital for young people with learning difficulties, autism and challenging behaviour: a continuous quality improvement and change management programme.

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1
Guy's & St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Children and young people with autism spectrum conditions frequently have adverse experiences in accessing health care.

METHODS:

An audit of experiences of families known to our tertiary service and hospital staff was conducted. A checklist asking about particular aspects of behaviour and communication was developed and incorporated into pre-admission planning.

RESULTS:

Awareness of the child/young person's communication needs and behaviours, plus good preplanning by all staff involved and a team member allocated to ensure that the care plan is carried through, has resulted in a vastly improved 'patient experience' from the perspective of family and staff.

CONCLUSION:

Children and young people with autism spectrum disorder, often with co-existing learning difficulties, vary greatly in their reactions to hospital admission. Preplanning that involves the family with a dedicated informed staff member can dramatically reduce distress and improve the patient and staff experience.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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