Developing and Testing the Functionality and Usability of a Bereavement Support Web-based Link for Bereaved Parents

ECU Author/Contributor (non-ECU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Laura Whittington (Creator)
East Carolina University (ECU )
Web Site:

Abstract: In 2017 , there were approximately 9 , 376 deaths of children aged 1-14 years (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , 2017). Family members experience immense grief as they transition to a life without their child. Bereaved parents have sleep deprivation , along with other related health concerns within 6 months of their child's death (Dias , Docherty & Brandon , 2017). Parents report that the support by health care workers after their child's death impacted their healing indefinitely (Jost & Haase , 1989). The current follow-up practices that some physicians provide to bereaved parents include mailing cards , making phone calls , attending funerals and visitations , and meeting with the family (Granek et al. , 2015 , pg. 1627). Despite some of health care providers best efforts , communication is lacking , and there is a gap between parents and health care providers regarding the role they are believed to have in bereaved parents' lives (Meert et al. , 2011). Providers should implement the interventions requested by parents on a case-by-case basis. This easily-accessible web-based link can provide the opportunity to bridge the gap between professionals and parents during bereavement. The link will address the difference in expectations by allowing parents to report what they expect from the physicians. The purpose of this descriptive qualitative study is to understand the health care providers perspectives of the functionality and the usability of a web-based link for bereaved parents. Data collection involves focus group and individual interviews with the following groups: 1. Pediatric Physicians/Pediatricians 2. Nurses 3. Other Health Care Providers involved in pediatric care (quality of life team members , bereavement counselors , child life specialists , pastors , social workers , IT professionals , etc.). The interviews will follow a semi-structured interview guide. The parents who have lost a child aged 0-18 in the last 2 years will be interviewed. After gaining information through the interviews , we will revise and further develop the web-based link to deliver targeted and individualized interventions for parents. Bereavement care interventions that are generalized are not sufficient in providing effective care since the grieving process is a personal and unique experience for parents. Individualized interventions have the potential to improve the effectiveness of bereavement care practices targeted towards improving bereaved parents' health outcomes.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2019
Bereavement, Web-based Link, Bereavement Support, Parents

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