Jessie May is a charity-run organisation who provides specialist care and support through a team of children’s nurses and nursery nurses in partnership with families and other agencies to deliver respite and palliative care service in the comfort of the families own home to children and young people with life limiting conditions.
The Departments of Health and Education (2015) define children with complex and continuing health care needs as individuals with prolonged chronic conditions which have an adverse effect upon a child’s development and welfare. Many of the children with long term life-limiting illness or disabilities may have impaired communication (Teare, 2009).
However Hewitt-Taylor (2008) suggests that communication difficulties may not arise because of the child’s inability to understand, but occurs through inability to make themselves understood by others. Children with complex needs communicate about the same things as the other children, for example their feelings, needs, likes and dislikes (Mencap, 2010). The Convention on the Rights of a Child (2014), specifically states that each and every child has a right to be listened to. Jessie May has recognised the possible barriers for some of the children that we care for being heard and listened to due to communication barriers. This problem is something that communication passports address.
A literature review identified three pieces of research, Millar (2007), Sanderson (2003) and Bell, 2012), all have similar findings that suggest there are significant benefits to using communication passports, and we aim to conduct a study on communication passports to ensure that we produce a passport that is relevant to the service that we provide.
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