Telephone Nursing Stakeholder views and understandings from a paediatric and a gender perspective
Sammanfattning: ‘First line healthcare’ is offered via telephone in many Western countries. The overall aim of this thesis is to describe Telephone Nursing (TN) from three viewpoints: telenurses, parents calling for their children, and operation managers. Four empirical studies were conducted. Telenurses described their work in five different ways: ‘Assess, refer and give advice to the caller’, ‘Support the caller’, ‘Strengthen the caller’, ‘Teach the caller’ and ‘Facilitate the caller’s learning’, which all constitute a TN ‘work map’. Authentic paediatric calls between parents and telenurses revealed that 73% of callers were mothers and children were aged between 5 days and 14.5 years. The top three contact reasons were ear and skin problems, and fever, with a median call length of 4.4 minutes. More than half of the calls resulted in referrals and 48% received self-care advice. The likelihood of fathers being given referrals as a result of their call was almost twice as high as that for mothers, while mothers were almost twice as likely to receive self-care advice as fathers. Parents described their degree of worry and trust that influenced their decisions whether to contact SHD or not. Their calls were carefully prepared, and the parent calling often depended on family routine. Parents reported to follow recommendations. Most relied upon their own intuition if further worried, but some indicated they would never seek healthcare unless it was recommended. Operation managers described four main goals of TN work: ‘create feelings of trust’, ‘achieve patient safety’, ‘assess, refer and give advice’, and ‘teach the caller’. Equitable healthcare was regarded as important, whereas health promotion was not considered as part of the goals.Conclusion: The studied TN viewpoints present concordance and discrepancies. Paediatric health calls appear mostly to be a woman-to-woman activity. Telenurses’ increased gender competence might increase TN safety. For that matter, telenurses’ collaboration with parents and making parents aware of holding the ultimate responsibility for their child’s condition is important. Goals of TN work and their relationship with healthcare obligations such as equitable healthcare and health promotion need further clarification. The viewpoints described in this thesis may contribute to the development of TN.
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