The Danish preventive child health examination should expand on mental health and the well-being of the family.

Kirsten Lykke Lykke Nielsen, Anette Hauskov Graungaard, Ruth Ertmann, Susanne Reventlow

    9 Citationer (Scopus)

    Abstract

    INTRODUCTION:
    In Denmark, around one in six children has significant somatic, psychological or social health problems, often in combination. The preventive child health examinations have a high participation rate; and they produce significant findings, predominantly concerning the child's physical health. The aim of this study was to explore how the child's physical, cognitive and psychosocial health are examined and assessed at the health examinations of children aged 0-5 years in general practice.
    METHODS:
    Our study employed observations of the consultations as well as individual interviews. A total of nine doctors from seven clinics participated. We included 21 cases in our study, each consisting of a consultation and subsequent interviews with the child's parents and with the doctor.
    RESULTS:
    The examination of the child's physical health and development is an important feature of the health examination. Motor, cognitive, social skills and mental health are assessed globally through observation and communication with the child, and, to a lesser degree, through conversation with the parents. The child health examination rarely has a family perspective, unless the doctor is already aware of problems in the family.
    CONCLUSION:
    The preventive child health examination is an important platform for examination and dialogue concerning a child's health. The physical aspect works well, but there is a need for development of the assessment of the child's mental health and the well-being of the family.
    FUNDING:
    Postdoctoral Fellowships in General Practice/Family Medicine - Denmark.
    TRIAL REGISTRATION:
    not relevant.
    OriginalsprogEngelsk
    TidsskriftDanish Medical Journal
    Vol/bind62
    Udgave nummer5
    ISSN1603-9629
    StatusUdgivet - maj 2015

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