Thursday, May 5, 2011

Children hospitalized longer when parents aren't fluent in English - FierceHealthcare

Children hospitalized for infections were more likely to spend more time in the hospital and were less likely to receive home healthcare referrals if their parents or main caregivers had difficulty speaking English, a new study reports in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

In a nine-year study (between 2000 and 2008), nearly 1,300 children whose parents or caregivers were determined to have limited English proficiency were found to have spent at least 60 percent more time in the hospital when compared to children whose parents/caregivers spoke fluently, said study author Michael Levas, MD, and and his colleagues from Children's Mercy Hospitals and Clinics in Kansas City, Mo.

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Overall, most of the parents and caregivers observed by the researchers--nearly 97 percent--were proficient in English. The 3 percent who were not were more likely to be Latino and either uninsured or insured by Medicaid for both comparisons.

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