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Babies, children and young people’s experience of healthcare guideline review
  1. Amy Alcock1,
  2. Michelle Richardson2
  1. 1 Royal Glamorgan Hospital, Llantrisant, Rhondda Cynon Taf, UK
  2. 2 Community Paediatrics, Royal Glamorgan Hospital, Llantrisant, Rhondda Cynon Taf, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Amy Alcock, Community Paediatrics, Royal Glamorgan Hospital, Llantrisant, Rhondda Cynon Taf, UK; amy.alcock{at}

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Optimising patient experience is a key part of effective healthcare for adults. Babies, children and young people are entitled to the same high-quality healthcare experience.

This is the first guideline of its type, published in August 2021. It aims to describe good patient experience for babies, children and young people and make recommendations on how it can be delivered.1

Key recommendations

Overarching principles

Adhere to all legislation and policies regarding safeguarding and the rights of babies, children and young people.

Recognise that children and young people’s needs, preferences and engagement will vary and should be revisited regularly. Adjust your approach to improve engagement, for example, additional time, different communication means or consider a different person leading.

Communication and information

Develop a rapport with babies, children and young people by being friendly, encouraging, non-judgemental, treating them as individuals and taking time to address their concerns.

Recognise the most appropriate person, place and time to have discussions with a child or young person and the language or form of communication that is most appropriate. This may be with or without the parent/carer present.

In times of distress, children may not be able to express their feelings so observe any non-verbal cues and listen to their carers’ views.

Planning healthcare

Involve children in discussions around their care, providing opportunities for them to share opinions and supporting them to make decisions independently.

When discussing healthcare decisions, give age-appropriate information and offer alternative options for decision-making, for example, writing things down or using decision aids.

Involvement in improving healthcare experience

Involve children and young …

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  • Contributors AA wrote and edited the manuscript. MR edited the manuscript. Both authors approved the final draft.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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