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INFLUENCE OF A CHILD’S CHRONIC ILLNESS ON FAMILY DYNAMICS AS PERCEIVED BY FAMILY MEMBERS-CAREGIVERS IN TEACHING HOSPITALS IN ENUGU METROPOLIS.

Abstract 

Chronic illness is the term used to describe diseases which have non-reversible pathological condition that cannot be corrected by medical intervention. Examples include sickle cell disease, cancer, Aids, bronchial asthma among others. Many children are affected by chronic illness and cared for in the homes. The diagnosis of chronic illness in a child evokes a lot of influences on the dynamics of both immediate and extended families. This study investigated the influence of a child’s chronic illness on family dynamics as perceived by family members/caregivers in Enugu metropolis. Descriptive survey design of qualitative and quantitative was used. Four objectives of the study were to: determine the influence of a child’s chronic illness on family cohesion; determine the influence of a child’s chronic illness on family flexibility; determine the influence of a child’s chronic illness on the communication pattern in the family and identify the construct of the family dynamics mostly affected by a child’s chronic illness. A population of four hundred (400) adult family members/caregivers who met the inclusion criteria was purposively selected. A 5 point Likert scale questionnaire with a reliability of 0.73 after the face and content validation was used for data collection as well as an in depth interview guide. Descriptive statistics of frequencies, mean and standard deviation including descriptive phenomenological transcription were used for data analysis. Findings revealed that a child’s chronic illness resulted in good family cohesion evidenced by love, concern, support, sensitive, closeness to one another that many were unhappy, moody, sorrowful, and even cried during times of their sick one’s crisis. On family flexibility, finding revealed decision making by parents with inputs from family members, adjustment in performance of roles, joint problem solving with mother and older female siblings doing more work. The family communication was cordial and accommodating but a significant number reported reduced verbal communication characterized by irritability and disjointedness when asked questions. Family flexibility is the most affected dynamic construct. In conclusion, the participants perceived a lot of influence by the child’s chronic illness. In recommendation, there is need for knowledge update on child’s chronic illness for families, caregivers, health workers as well as encouraging community based support networks for the chronically ill families to ensure good care for this vulnerable group.

Project detailsContents
 
Number of Pages115 pages
Chapter one Introduction
Chapter two Literature review
Chapter three  methodology
Chapter  four  Data analysis
Chapter  five Summary,discussion & recommendations
ReferenceReference
QuestionnaireQuestionnaire
AppendixAppendix
Chapter summary1 to 5 chapters
Available documentPDF and MS-word format


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