Information Needs of Neonatal Intensive Care Parents: A Scoping Review
Briscoe, Kadeen N.
Singh, Mina D.
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Session presented on Friday, July 24, 2015: Purpose: The purpose of this scoping review was to identify and describe what is known about the information needs of parents with preterm infants during hospitalization. Methods: A scoping review of extant literatures published since 1991 was conducted using Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health, Nursing and Allied Health Source, Ovid Medline, Scopus, PubMed, Google Scholar and Google. The key term search strategy was employed using: information needs, parents, parenting, mother, father, neonatal intensive care, preterm, premature, and infant. Data collection included study citation, type, objective, methodology, participants, and identified information needs. Results: The scoping review produced 13 articles that met the inclusion criteria, of which 2 were review articles; 2 provided general guidelines on how to undertake parent education in the NICU; 5 were qualitative research papers; 3 were quantitative, descriptive studies; and 1 was a mix-methods design. Articles in the scoping review were selected if they described some aspect of information need within the NICU parent population. From these articles only 7 (53%) provided insight into the specific information parents' needs and many cited the same empirical sources. Nine information needs were identified. Conclusion: There appears to be a lack of comprehensive and in-depth analysis that focuses specifically on the information needs of parents during their infant's hospitalization. It is recognized that parental information needs changes over time in relation to the infant's clinical condition. This gap in knowledge regarding the relevant and specific information needs that parents require hinders the development of evidence-based approaches to meeting the needs of parents and reduction of the provision of inconsistent information. Further empirical investigation is needed to assess parental information needs in relation to determinants including age, gender and cultural background. No studies included in this scoping review used instruments that were specifically designed to assess the full scope of information needs of parents in the NICU. On-going assessment of parent's information needs is required to facilitate and support them in adjusting to their parenting role, to promote effective decision-making and well-being.