Home Mental Health & Well-Being Study Finds Key Factors Influencing Parental Readiness for Discharge Among Children with Nephrotic Syndrome

Study Finds Key Factors Influencing Parental Readiness for Discharge Among Children with Nephrotic Syndrome

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A recent study published in the Journal of Pediatric Nursing has shed light on the crucial factors that influence the readiness of parents to discharge their children from hospital care when suffering from primary nephrotic syndrome (PNS). This cross-sectional study, conducted across five large tertiary hospitals in Hunan, China, focuses on the interplay between perceived social support, parenting self-efficacy, and parenting stress, and how these elements mediate parents’ readiness for discharge.

Primary nephrotic syndrome is a chronic kidney disorder that requires intensive and prolonged care, posing significant challenges to affected families. The study aimed to investigate the levels of perceived social support among parents, their readiness for discharge, and the roles of parenting self-efficacy and stress in this context. The researchers sought to understand how these factors collectively impact the transition from hospital to home care, which is critical for the well-being and continued recovery of the child.

The study involved 350 parents of children diagnosed with PNS, with data collected from May 2022 to December 2022. After excluding 19 invalid questionnaires, 331 valid responses were analysed, representing a 94.57% response rate. The participants completed several standardised questionnaires, including the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS), the General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSES), and the Parenting Stress Index-Short Form (PSI-SF), within six hours prior to their child’s discharge.

The study revealed that parents of children with PNS generally experienced low levels of perceived social support, high levels of parenting stress, and varying degrees of readiness for discharge. The analysis showed significant correlations among these variables. Notably, perceived social support was positively correlated with both parenting self-efficacy and readiness for discharge, while parenting stress was negatively correlated with these outcomes.

Perceived social support emerged as a crucial factor, with the total perceived social support score being moderately high among the participants. This indicated that parents who felt more supported by their social networks were better prepared for their child’s discharge. The study highlighted the importance of social support in reducing parenting stress and enhancing self-efficacy, thereby facilitating a smoother transition to home care.

Higher levels of self-efficacy were associated with better discharge readiness. Parents who believed in their ability to manage their child’s condition felt more confident and prepared for discharge. This belief significantly mitigated the adverse effects of stress and improved their overall readiness.

High levels of parenting stress negatively impacted parents’ readiness for discharge. Stress was particularly high among mothers, who constituted the majority of the study participants. The findings suggest that interventions aimed at reducing parenting stress could significantly improve parents’ readiness for discharge.

The study employed path analysis to explore the mediating roles of parenting self-efficacy and stress in the relationship between perceived social support and discharge readiness. The results indicated that both self-efficacy and stress served as significant mediators. Specifically, perceived social support enhanced self-efficacy, which in turn reduced stress levels and improved discharge readiness.

Perceived social support had a direct positive impact on discharge readiness. Self-efficacy and stress also played a role in mediating the effects of social support on readiness for discharge. Higher social support increased self-efficacy, which then decreased stress, ultimately improving readiness for discharge.

The findings underscore the importance of comprehensive discharge planning, that includes psychological support for parents. Healthcare providers should focus on enhancing perceived social support and parenting self-efficacy while addressing parenting stress. Practical steps could include strengthening social support networks through community programmes and peer support groups, providing parents with the necessary education and skills to manage their child’s condition confidently, and implementing stress reduction interventions, such as counselling and stress management workshops, to help parents cope better with the demands of caregiving.

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