Self-care support for children and adolescents with long-term health conditions

Added June 2, 2020

Citation: Bee PE, Pedley R, Rithalia A, Richardson GA, Pryjmachuk S, Kirk S, Bower P. Self-care support for children and adolescents with long-term conditions: the REfOCUS evidence synthesis. NIHR HS&DR Journal. 2018.

What is this? The COVID-19 pandemic is placing a strain on healthcare services. Existing research on self-care support for children and adolescents with long-term health conditions may provide useful information for policy makers.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for comparative effectiveness studies of self-care support delivered to children and young people (aged <18 years) with a long-term physical or mental condition. They did not restrict their searches by date or language of publication and did the search in March 2015. They included 97 studies reporting on 114 interventions, with 37 trials rated as being at low risk of bias. Among the interventions, the authors categorized 4% as pure self-care, 23% as facilitated self-care, 65% as intensively facilitated self-care and 8% as ‘case management’.

What works: Self-care support interventions have statistically significant, but minimal, benefits for the quality of life of children and young people with long-term conditions, and for emergency department visits.

What doesn’t work: Nothing noted.

What’s uncertain: The effects on hospital admissions and total healthcare costs of self-care support interventions for children and young people with long-term conditions are uncertain.

The optimal models of self-care support for children and young people with long-term conditions are uncertain, because of the size and nature of the available evidence.

The effects of different types of self-care support for children and young people over a range of long-term conditions are uncertain.

 

Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence on the coronavirus (COVID-19) but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the basis of this summary alone.

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