In Bonis’ (2016) review, she highlighted that several factors may impact the continued or frequent use of CAMHS, and little is known about parents’ decision to use or not use services (Carlon et al., 2015). Therefore, understanding the unique needs of primary caregivers (parents) to enhance involvement in their child’s mental health care is valuable.
Parents of children with mental health challenges report they feel “stressed beyond their limits” (Bitsika et al., 2013, p 540). This can impact their ability to parent effectively and to manage or be involved in their child’s mental health care (Ludlow et al., 2011; Myers et al., 2009). A systematic review by Jackson et al. (2008) found that when parents are faced with child health decisions, the emotions (e.g. anxiety, despair) make decision making even more difficult. By asking the question, what are parents’ decision support needs? This review found emerging themes of “the need for information”, “having control over the process” and “talking to other” (Jackson et al., 2008).
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