The health psychological committee works in collaboration with local schools in preparing children psychologically before undergoing medical procedures. Health psychological committee considers the well-being of the sick children and the emotional preparation of the children before hospitalization.
The psychological preparation entails the planned approach employed by trained child helper with the aim of reducing nervousness associated to medical procedures, reducing pain, accelerating the healing process and making the child capable of coping with the medical procedure.
According to (Glasper and Richardson 2006), the Bowlby theory’s support the concept of a attachment whereby young children require t stay in close proximity to their care giver especially the mother and be comforted by her presence, sound and touch. Health psychological committee works in such a way that they make the children feel at ease, reduce parent’s anxiety and reduce hospitalization time. In addition, this psychological preparation reduces the financial costs of hospitalization.
Everyone including children is fearful about surgery, is it often helpful to express their worry to health psychological committee. Health psychological committee is especially needed to children prior to surgery where the parents worried and thus contributing to the child’s apprehension. The health psychological committee encourages children to carry with them their favorite toys or blanket before the surgery to make them feel relaxed (Kain 2001).
Elkins and Roberts 2002, maintain that emotional factors in children play an important role in children’s condition during hospitalization. Among the strategies employed by the health psychological committee in assisting children cope with medical procedures include, encouraging children to play in order to enhance the child to cope with any allayed anxiety, use of dolls in order to prepare children for specific events.
Health psychologists also use distraction to assist children cope with medical procedures like surgery by diverting the child’s attention to provide entertainment during a medical procedure and by use of special developmentally suitable play to maximize the coping strategies. Distraction aims at making the treatment more bearable by removing attention from the unpleasant event to something more interesting and enjoyable.
Health psychologists are involved helping patients manage chronic pain. Chronic and persistent pain management is psychological and physical problems and health psychological committee ought to have extensive knowledge in latest pain management techniques so that they can choose the best methods and strategies to assist patients cope with pain. Health psychological committee provides patients with Pain Management Psychotherapy the psychological guide for chronic pain treatment.
Health Psychological committee aims at reducing preoperative stress therefore aiding the process of recovery. Psychological preparation before surgery is important patients. Among the obvious threats associated with surgery include, pain, anesthesia, physical restriction and life threatening operations and taken away from home. Deprivation of sleep is also a considerable cause of stress to surgery patients. Health psychological committee provides guidance and support to patients prior to surgery in order to quicken their recovery process (Goleman 1987).
The overall experience and outcome of the surgery is improved when the patient takes an active role in their healing. For instance if the patient is experiencing pain, the pain can be a significant stressor resulting to psychological distress. Health psychological committee focuses in managing pain and stress in surgery patients in order to influence their recovery in a positive way. Among the advantages of psychological preparation prior to surgery include; reduced pain, less anxiety and distress prior and after surgery, faster return to health, shorter recovery period and increased patient satisfaction and outcome.
Among the strategies that are employed by health psychological committee assisting patient cope with medical procedure include, gathering information regarding the surgery and recovery , talking about pain management in order for patients to get prepared for the type of pain they might experience and how to manage it, cognitive restructuring by assisting the patient imagine differently in order to influence the behavioral and emotional responses to the situation which aids in reducing fear and anxiety.
In addition, teaching patients about relaxation is vital since it aids in counteracting negative physiological that occur during stress (Sirgan 2007).
Health psychological committee give spiritual support to support patients in withstanding the distress and pain associated with medical procedures including surgery. Spiritual issues are beneficial in giving the patients some reassurance when faced fears, illness or surgery, a combination of prayer or meditation assist in giving patients a relaxing response which contributes positively to overall recovery of the patient.
Health psychological committee is involved in assisting patients who have suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder in order to aid their recovery. Health psychological committee undertake critical incident stress debriefing which entails a structured intervention aimed at promoting emotional processing of traumatic events through the ventilation and normalization of responses.
Diagnosis of stress disorder such as post-traumatic stress consider symptoms such as dysthamia, depression, schizophrenia, mood disorders, and other substance use and other psychological disorders. Health psychological committee undertakes diagnosis of stress disorders and advice patients on appropriate medical care to alleviate the conditions (Reeves 2007).
Health psychological committee can assist chronic illness patients through provision of support groups where the individuals can share their experiences, and learn new ways of coping with illnesses. They also provide personalized counseling sessions since not all patients can cope in support groups and some patients have problems that require individual counseling sessions.
Health psychological committees assist in teaching patients coping skills which include, ability to handle anger, having a positive aspect of life, participation in daily activities and learning to live at present ignoring past memories and future thoughts.
Glasper, E. A. & Richardson, J. (2006). A textbook of children’s and young people’s nursing. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Goleman, D. (1987). Health: Psychology; Emotional Preparation Aids Surgical Recovery. Retrieved on August 25, 2010 from http://www.nytimes.com/1987/12/10/us/health-psychology-emotional-preparation-aids-surgical-recovery.html
Kain, Z. (2001).Preoperative Psychological Preparation of the Child for Surgery: An Update . Anesthesiology Clinics of North America, 23, 597-614.
Reeves, R. R. (2007). Diagnosis and Management of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Patients. Journal of THE American Osteopathic Association, 107, 181-189. Retrieved on August 25, 2010 from http://www.jaoa.org/cgi/content/full/107/5/181
Sirgan, G. (2007). Helping People cope with their Chronic Illness. Retrived on August 25, 2010 from http://www.steadyhealth.com/articles/Helping_people_cope_with_their_chronic_illness_a686.html
Wallace, L. M. (1984). Psychological Preparation as a Method of Reducing the Stress of Surgery. Journal of Human Stress, 10, 62-77.