Partnering with children and their families may require different approaches to partnering solely with adults.

    Why does this standard need special consideration by health service organisations that provide care for children?

      Partnering with children and their families may require different approaches to partnering solely with adults because:

      • Children are more dependent than adults
      • Children have more possible developmental states
      • There is greater variability in children’s capacity to be involved in partnerships.

      The delivery of care across the age and developmental spectrum for children has many implications for health service delivery, development of health literacy, child–family interaction, and the systems used for gathering and acting on feedback. Children and their families have a vital role to play, not only in making (or assisting the child to make) decisions about the health care needed for the child, but also in providing ongoing care to the child during and following their stay in hospital.

      Engaging children and their families in the child’s care can present challenges to the workforce because of the child’s:

      • Level of maturity and capacity to understand
      • Previous experiences of health care
      • Personality and behavioural characteristics
      • Cultural background
      • Primary language (and that of their family)
      • Illness, injury or condition
      • Needs and wants versus those of their family.

      In addition, all states and territories have different legislative provisions on informed consent based on age, which inform local policy.
       

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      Last updated 3rd July, 2018 at 01:12am
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      References

      7. Children’s Hospitals Australasia, Association for the Wellbeing of Children in Healthcare. Charter on the Rights of Children and Young People in Healthcare Services in Australia. Canberra: Children’s Hospitals Australasia (accessed Apr 2016).

      17. National Organization of Circumcision Information Resource Centers. Informed consent, parental permission, and assent in pediatric practice. San Anselmo, CA: NOCIRC; 1995 (accessed Dec 2017).