Strategies for Nurses

Today more chronically ill children survive, thrive and attend school. To effectively support parents and caregivers of a chronically ill child, nurses must recognize the unique challenges faced by families in support of their child’s health. Nurses, especially school nurses, often have a critical role as advocate, leading the collaborative process between home, school and the medical community.

When nurses understand and recognize the signs of chronic sorrow, they can provide support and guidance for parents. Nurses can be a caring non-judgmental presence and should show parents empathy, compassion and respect even when parents express anger and frustration.

Nurses are in a unique position to appreciate the rhythm of joy and sorrow that typifies life. They are also in a position to build trusting relationships that help both the chronically ill child and the entire family unit.