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Parental perspectives on emergency health service use during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United Kingdom: A qualitative study.
Breckons, Matthew; Thorne, Sophie; Walsh, Rebecca; Bhopal, Sunil; Owens, Stephen; Rankin, Judith.
  • Breckons M; Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, United Kingdom.
  • Thorne S; NIHR Applied Research Collaboration North East & North Cumbria, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, United Kingdom.
  • Walsh R; Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, Leeds, United Kingdom.
  • Bhopal S; Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, London, United Kingdom.
  • Owens S; Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, United Kingdom.
  • Rankin J; NIHR Applied Research Collaboration North East & North Cumbria, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, United Kingdom.
PLoS One ; 18(5): e0285375, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20233496
ABSTRACT
UK 'Lockdown' measures introduced in March 2020 aimed to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Although seeking healthcare was still permitted within restrictions, paediatric emergency department attendances reduced dramatically and led to concern over risks caused by delayed presentation. Our aim was to gain insight into healthcare decisions faced by parents during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and to understand if use of urgent healthcare, self-care, and information needs differed during lockdown as well as how parents perceived risks of COVID-19. We undertook qualitative telephone interviews with a purposive sample of parents living in the North East of England recruited through online advertising. We used a semi-structured interview schedule to explore past and current healthcare use, perceptions of risk and the impact of the pandemic on healthcare decisions. Interviews were transcribed and analysed using Thematic Analysis. Three major themes were identified which concerned (i) how parents made sense of risks posed to, and by their children, (ii) understanding information regarding health services and (iii) attempting to make the right decision. These themes contribute to the understanding of the initial impact of COVID-19 and associated restrictions on parental decisions about urgent healthcare for children. These findings are important to consider when planning for potential future public health emergencies but also in the wider context of encouraging appropriate use of urgent healthcare.
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Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Main subject: Emergency Medical Services / COVID-19 Type of study: Observational study / Prognostic study / Qualitative research Limits: Child / Humans Country/Region as subject: Europa Language: English Journal: PLoS One Journal subject: Science / Medicine Year: 2023 Document Type: Article Affiliation country: Journal.pone.0285375

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Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Main subject: Emergency Medical Services / COVID-19 Type of study: Observational study / Prognostic study / Qualitative research Limits: Child / Humans Country/Region as subject: Europa Language: English Journal: PLoS One Journal subject: Science / Medicine Year: 2023 Document Type: Article Affiliation country: Journal.pone.0285375