Assessment of Parents’ Knowledge about the Provision of First Aid to Their Children after Thermal Burn Injuries
In Lithuania, approximately 9.5 thousand inhabitants experience burn traumas each year, of which one-fourth are children. It is important to investigate knowledge that parents have about the causes of burn injuries and appropriate preventive measures, including the ability to provide first aid in a proper and timely manner. Qualified first aid provided by parents would enable saving children with burns or minimizing complications and long-term negative outcomes.
Aim. The aim of this study was to assess parents’ knowledge of first aid in case of child burn injury in relation to their previous experience of burns.
Methods. Quantitative cross-sectional study design was applied. Two groups of parents/guardians were included in the study: (1) those whose child experienced thermal injury under 3 years of age and (2) families that had no experience of child thermal injury until they were 3 years of age or younger. In total, 243 parents were invited to take part in the study and 232 filled in the forms with the response rate of 95.5%. The data were collected between February and May, 2017. An anonymous questionnaire was developed by the researchers. Ethical permission to conduct the study was issued by the Bioethics Centre of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences.
Results. The results are presented on 105 boys (45.3%) and 127 girls (54.7%) whose parents provided information for this study; 68 children (29.3%) had experience of burns. Boys suffered from burns significantly more often than girls (53.3% and 9.4%, respectively, P<0.001). In 85% of the cases, hot beverages were the main cause of burns in children. The results revealed that 55 children (80.9%) were provided with first aid within the first 5 minutes after a burn and parents were those who most often (85.3%) administered first aid to their children. The experience of thermal burns in children was linked with the socio-demographic characteristics of their parents. Parents whose children did not have burns knew better how to behave in provided sample cases than those whose children had experience of burns. The results revealed that the average point of parents’ selfassessed knowledge was 5.1±1.98 (min – 1, max – 9, median – 5.0).
Conclusions. Parents who were younger, lived in the city, had higher education and were married had better first aid knowledge related to child burns. Self-assessment of knowledge about first aid in burns was higher in parents whose children never experienced burns. It is necessary to teach parents/guardians how to provide timely and proper first aid in case of a child thermal burn.
Correspondence to E. Juškauskienė Department of Nursing and Care, Faculty of Nursing, Medical Academy, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Eivenių 4, LT‑50009 Kaunas, Lithuania. E-mail: email@example.com