Stories about: nursing

Paper Trail: Challenges for developmental-behavioral workforce, pediatric dentistry trends, implications of herpes zoster and more

Clinical research from Boston Children's

Boston Children’s Hospital is at the forefront of clinical research. Stay connected with Paper Trail — a monthly feature highlighting recently published outcomes data and new approaches to the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of pediatric illnesses.

Implications of herpes zoster in vaccinated children

Researchers including dermatologist Jennifer Huang, MD, describe seven children without a history of primary varicella who presented with herpes zoster that correlated with the original VZV vaccination site and resolved without complications. These cases, published on Feb. 6 in Pediatric Dermatology, highlight the close correlation between the vaccination site and cutaneous eruption.

Trends in pediatric dental care use

Co-authored by Dentist-in-Chief Man Wai Ng and published in the April 2018 issue of Dental Clinics of North America, this article explores trends in three areas of pediatric dental services: access among Medicaid-enrolled children, treatment of oral health conditions, and use of emergency departments for dental needs among U.S. children.

Parents’ perceptions of their child’s health status 

The aim of this study by Nurse Scientists Kristine Maria Ruggiero and Judith A. Vessey, Associate Chief Nurse Patricia Hickey and colleagues, was to examine parents’ perceptions of the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in their school-age child with congenital heart disease (CHD). The results of this study, published in the Journal for Specialists in Pediatric Nursing, are useful in providing practical recommendations in caring for children with CHDs while informing relevant policies.

Challenges for developmental-behavioral peds

In this Pediatrics paper published Feb. 16, Carolyn Bridgemohan, MD and colleagues surveyed a sample of the developmental-behavioral pediatric workforce and found it struggles to meet current service demands. Clinician burnout was reported with increased patient complexity and female subspecialists spent more time in billable and nonbillable components of clinical care.

For more clinically-actionable insights, bookmark Boston Children’s Notes blog for primary care providers.

Nursing and patient experience: Six lessons learned after 42 years

Susan Shaw offers words of wisdom after 42 years of caring for children and families.

Recently retired as Vice President, Associate Chief of Nursing and Director of Clinical Operations at Boston Children’s Hospital, Susan Shaw discusses the power of patient experience and shares lessons learned from her 42-year career working with children and families. …Read More

Collaborating with parents to improve patient care: lessons from a cardiac sedation nurse

collaborating with parents for pediatric health care

Anyone who’s a regular at a coffee shop can relate to this scene: you walk in, and the barista behind the counter notices you.  She waves, says your name, and you wave back.  By the time you get to the cash register, she’s already handing you your order — just the way you like it.

If your local coffee shop can prepare for your specific preferences, why can’t your health care team?

Often, the kinds of information not typically captured in a medical record are crucial to a patient’s experience. For example, if a child sucks his right thumb, his mother may tell the sedation nurse try to inserting the IV in his left arm first.  If a baby girl isn’t calmed by music but is mesmerized by a spinning toy, her father may want that toy in the room whenever she’s having an echocardiogram, so she sits still and the images are easier to interpret.

“Patients with chronic conditions return quite frequently to the same clinic for follow-up care and tests, and they shouldn’t have to repeat the same information each time,” says Brenda Brawn, RN, BSN, CCRN. “It’s not extraneous information; it can and should be incorporated into their plan of care.”

Brawn has been piloting a way to address this need in her work as a cardiac sedation nurse caring for pediatric heart transplant patients.

…Read More

Does this nurse know my child? Continuity of nursing care in the PICU: Challenges and opportunities


When Jennifer Baird, PhD, MSW, RN, set out to study best practices in nursing in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU), she didn’t know where the project would take her. “I intentionally left it open-ended,” she explains. “It was essentially an ethnographic study; I observed interactions between nurses and families over the course of a year, and also interviewed them separately.”

Baird, who is finishing up her Harvard-Wide Pediatric Health Services Research Fellowship at Boston Children’s Hospital, conducted her research in 2013 at a hospital in the Los Angeles, California area. Even though it wasn’t an explicit question, every single family brought up the subject of nursing continuity. “There was a story there,” says Baird, who published her findings this spring in Nursing Research, “And I needed to follow it.”

The story turned out to be complicated. …Read More