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A service evaluation of parent adherence with dysphagia management therapy guidelines: Reports from family carers supporting children with complex needs in Greece

Charpentier, A., Morgan, S. ORCID: 0000-0002-7573-4290 and Harding, C. ORCID: 0000-0002-5192-2027 (2019). A service evaluation of parent adherence with dysphagia management therapy guidelines: Reports from family carers supporting children with complex needs in Greece. Disability and Rehabilitation, doi: 10.1080/09638288.2018.1499048

Abstract

Purpose: Many children with complex needs exhibit eating, drinking and/or swallowing disorders (dysphagia). These children often have associated learning needs, and require assistance from carers for daily tasks such as eating and drinking. The aim of this study was to identify which strategies to manage dysphagia were challenging for family carers, and reasons for any non-adherence.

Method: In this service evaluation researchers observed carers during mealtimes, and investigated carer opinions of strategies used to minimise the risks of dysphagia. Eight children with complex needs aged 3.4 - 7.5 years and their primary family caregiver participated.

Results: Adherence with speech and language pathologists’
dysphagia recommendations overall was over 50% in all but one case. For specific strategies, the highest adherence was observed for diet modifications of foods (89%), communication during the mealtime (83%), amount of food to present (81%) and the pacing of fluids and foods (81%). Lower levels of adherence were identified in relation to postural management (58%), environmental changes (58%), utensils (56%) and preparatory strategies (49%).

Conclusion: Adherence with use of strategies to support mealtimes was over 50% in all but one case. Findings suggest that support is essential in order to promote safe mealtimes, reduce family carers’ stress and increase knowledge, confidence and adherence in implementing dysphagia guidelines in the family home.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Disability and Rehabilitation on 2018, available online: https://doi.org/10.1080/09638288.2018.1499048.
Publisher Keywords: Feeding difficulties; carer adherence; complex needs; mealtime strategies; dysphagia
Subjects: P Language and Literature
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
Departments: School of Health Sciences > Language & Communication Science
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/20268
[img] Text - Accepted Version
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