Participation of parents of hospitalized children in medical rounds: A qualitative study on contributory factors

Peter J. S. van Oort, Jolanda M. Maaskant, Marian Smeulers, Nicky van Oostrum, Eric Vermeulen, Johannes B. van Goudoever

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Factors that promote parents’ participation during medical rounds on their hospitalized child have not been fully addressed. The aim of this study was to identify factors that promote the participation of family members during medical rounds. Design and methods: This was a descriptive qualitative study using elements of analysis from the grounded theory method. Semi-structured interviews and non-participant observations were performed from December 2015 until June 2016 and took place on a general academic pediatric ward where the age of children did not exceed 12 months. Results: In total 20 participants were interviewed: 10 pediatric nurses, 4 pediatricians and 6 parents. In addition, five medical rounds were videotaped. Five themes emerged from the analyses of the interviews and videotapes: “conditions” “structure of medical rounds” “cast” “adaptive professionals” and “parents’ participation as a process”. Conclusion: Contextual factors, such as the room and seating arrangement, as well as the willingness of healthcare professionals to work together with the parents are important in enabling parents’ participation. To promote active participation, professionals have to communicate in layman's terms and information given by parents has to be taken seriously. Support and coaching of parents during the medical rounds and evaluating the rounds are meaningful factors. Practice implications: These findings help healthcare professionals to restructure the traditional medical rounds to enable parents’ participation. The identified communication skills and attitudes can enhance the competencies of nurses and doctors as communicators and collaborators. This urge the need for more specific education for professionals to promote parents’ participation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e44-e51
JournalJournal of pediatric nursing
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2019

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