Aims “Patient experience” is an important area of patient care. This survey aimed to measure experiences of families with children with allergies <8 years old, attending our Paediatric Allergy clinic.
Methods The RCPCH Patient/Carer Allergy PREM (Patient Reported Experience Measure) tool, developed to allow services to measure the patient experience for children with allergic conditions, was used. Carers of all patients <8 years old, attending our Paediatric Allergy clinic between May- August 2013 were invited to complete the survey.
Results Twenty completed questioners were returned, of which one was excluded due to age being >8 years. Most patients were between 1–5 years of age. Nine out of ten (90%) parents felt that their child’s allergy condition has major impact on their lives. 79% of respondents felt that their child’s condition was clearly explained to them; however, only minority (21%) believed that professionals spoke to the children in an understandable way. The allergy staff inspired trust in most (89%) respondents. All parents had enough information regarding when to seek additional help but they lacked information on avoidance of allergens, danger signals to watch for and on support groups. 58% parents were aware of their child’s Personal Management plan which most had agreed with the Allergy clinic staff. All families with Adrenaline auto injectors were shown how to use it. 84% of parents believed their child’s school/nursery had enough information regarding their child’s condition but more than half had provided this information themselves. Only 21% believed that there was good communication between professionals about their child’s condition and 31% had felt confused at times by conflicting information given by different professionals. Overall, 81% of respondents classed the allergy services as Excellent or Very Good.
Conclusions Parent feedback about allergy services was generally positive. Better communication with GPs, schools/nurseries, and with families about their child’s management plan was identified as an area for improvement, and is being addressed. A combined clinic with Dermatology for children with eczema and food allergies is being considered.