Changing health care and school needs in the first year after traumatic brain injury
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Changing health care and school needs in the first year after traumatic brain injury

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  • English

  • Details:

    • Alternative Title:
      J Head Trauma Rehabil
    • Description:
      Objective: To examine children’s unmet and unrecognized health care and school needs following traumatic brain injury (TBI). Setting: Two pediatric trauma centers Participants: Children with all severity TBI aged 4–15 years. Design: Prospective cohort Main measures: Caregivers provided child health and school service use three and 12-months post-injury. Unmet and unrecognized needs were categorized compared to norms on standardized physical, cognitive, socioemotional health, or academic competence measures in conjunction with caregiver report of needs and services. Modified Poisson models examined child and family predictors of unmet and unrecognized needs. Results: Of 322 children, 28% had unmet or unrecognized health care or school needs at three months decreasing to 24% at 12 months. Unmet health care needs changed from primarily physical (79%) at 3 months to cognitive (47%) and/or socioemotional (68%) at 12-months. At 3 months, low social capital, pre-existing psychological diagnoses and age 6–11 years predicted higher health care and severe TBI predicted higher school needs. Twelve months post-injury, prior inpatient rehabilitation, low income and pre-existing psychological diagnoses were associated with higher health care needs; family function was important for school and health care needs. Conclusions: Targeted interventions to provide family supports may increase children’s access to services.
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