Objective: To assess the content and characteristics of satisfaction surveys for the development of a parent satisfaction questionnaire to improve clinical practice in pediatric intensive care.
Design: A structured literature review process. The databases PubMed and CINAHL were searched, via identified search terms, for relevant articles published between May 1994 and May 2004. Assessment and analysis of the material was related to development, content, reliability and validity, scales for scoring, and distribution of the satisfaction questionnaires.
Main Results: Twelve original studies were identified using ten different satisfaction surveys in pediatric, neonatal, or adult intensive care units or in general pediatric wards. All surveys counted a total of 248 questions or statements. Six satisfaction questionnaires categorized the questions or statements in 21 different formulated domains. Most questionnaires showed sufficient results on reliability and validity. Except for one satisfaction instrument, Likert-type scales were used for rating. One study described the distribution of the questionnaire after discharge from the hospital, whereas other questionnaires were distributed during hospital admission.
Conclusion: The use of parent satisfaction surveys in pediatric intensive care is not well documented. Family-centered care has become widely accepted as an important issue in quality of care, and satisfaction surveys are a valuable resource for measuring and improving clinical practice. Parent satisfaction surveys need to be developed based on the needs and experiences of parents, and emphasis should be put on methodologic issues to have the results accepted as valid and effective for possible changes in clinical practice.