Comment

‘And your name is?’: why children’s nurses should ask accompanying adults this question

Calling someone accompanying an unwell child ‘mum’ or ‘dad’ can be disrespectful or wrong

Calling an adult accompanying an unwell child ‘mum’ or ‘dad’ can be disrespectful or wrong, so it is important that nurses start using the person’s name

Have you ever referred directly to the adults accompanying the child that you are caring for in hospital as ‘mum’ and ‘dad’? If so, please stop and ask yourself why?

It’s easy to assume that the adult at the bedside is the child’s mother or father with parental responsibility, but this is unsafe practice and could result in confidential information being shared or consent sought from the wrong person. The adult at the bedside could just as easily be another family member, friend or neighbour.

But even if you are certain of people’s status as parents, would calling them

...

Want to read more?

Unlock full access to RCNi Plus today

Save over 50% on your first three months:

  • Customisable clinical dashboard featuring 200+ topics
  • Unlimited online access to all 10 RCNi Journals including Nursing Children and Young People
  • RCNi Learning featuring 180+ RCN accredited learning modules
  • NMC-compliant RCNi Portfolio to build evidence for revalidation
  • Personalised newsletters tailored to your interests

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?

Jobs