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Title: Using design to improve the healthcare experiences for children and young persons in primary care practices
Authors: Day, Jennifer L.
Keywords: Primary care
Young persons
Healthcare environments
Healthcare products
Healthcare experience
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: © Jennifer Louise Day
Abstract: Context of research: This thesis aims to develop design recommendations for primary care environments and medical equipment to improve the experience for children and young persons. Children and young persons may be particularly vulnerable to additional stress when trying to make sense of their medical care experiences due to the varying cognitive developmental level. The design of healthcare facilities has focused on functional effectiveness but has tended to ignore the psychological needs of the patients. Clinical environments and medical equipment have been found to impose an added stress for patients who are already suffering with the anxiety of illness. Methodology: Surveys and interviews were carried out with parents, healthcare professionals and design stakeholders to explore aspects of primary care environments and medical equipment. Parents (n = 228) were asked to rate twelve statements about emotions that their child might feel in waiting rooms, treatment rooms and about medical equipment. Semi-structured interviews (n = 4) were conducted with healthcare professionals with experience treating children and young persons. In-depth interviews (n = 10) were conducted with healthcare and children s design stakeholders including healthcare architects, medical product designers, children s product designers and healthcare practice staff. The topics explored included the processes and resources used in design and the main barriers faced, experiences of designing for children, young persons and people of different ages and the difficulties encountered. Findings: The parent and healthcare professional data identified that experiences were largely dictated by the provision of entertainment material, use of distraction, general décor of environments, behaviour of healthcare professionals towards both child and parent, and how the parent behaved in front of their child. The results from the design stakeholder interviews showed evidence of increased use of user-centred design techniques being incorporated into new, modern practices to respond to the psychological needs of patients but that also the provision of resources and standards could be a barrier to improved design options. The recommendations will encourage the inclusion of children- and young people-friendly design in current and future healthcare environments, and recommendations for future research.
Description: A Master's Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Master of Philosophy of Loughborough University.
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/10971
Appears in Collections:MPhil Theses (Design School)

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