UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Parental decision making involvement and decisional conflict: a descriptive study Boland, Laura; Kryworuchko, Jennifer; Saarimaki, Anton; Lawson, Margaret L


Background: Decisional conflict is a state of uncertainty about the best treatment option among competing alternatives and is common among adult patients who are inadequately involved in the health decision making process. In pediatrics, research shows that many parents are insufficiently involved in decisions about their child’s health. However, little is known about parents’ experience of decisional conflict. We explored parents’ perceived decision making involvement and its association with parents’ decisional conflict. Method: We conducted a descriptive survey study in a pediatric tertiary care hospital. Our survey was guided by validated decisional conflict screening items (i.e., the SURE test). We administered the survey to eligible parents after an ambulatory care or emergency department consultation for their child. Results: Four hundred twenty-nine respondents were included in the analysis. Forty-eight percent of parents reported not being offered treatment options and 23% screened positive for decisional conflict. Parents who reported being offered options experienced less decisional conflict than parents who reported not being offered options (5% vs. 42%, p 

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