Interactive web sites for families and physicians of pediatric intensive care unit patients: A preliminary report

Dana A.V. Braner, Susanna Lai, Richard Hodo, Laura A. Ibsen, Susan L. Bratton, Desiree Hollemon, Brahm Goldstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Objective: To describe our experience with a Web-based communications program for the patients, families, and referring physicians of patients admitted to our pediatric intensive care unit. Design: Prospective descriptive case series for a 32-month period from April 2000 through January 2003. Setting: Sixteen-bed multidisciplinary medical-surgical pediatric intensive care unit (PICU). Subjects: Seventy-three of 78 patients admitted to the PICU for >3 days and their families participated in the study, along with 26 referring physicians. Intervention: None. Measurements and Main Results: We found that 77% (474/619) of surveyed family members and friends thought that the Web page helped them share information, 13% (82/619) were unsure, and only <1% (4/619) thought it did not help them share information. When comparing respondents who thought the Web page helped them share information with those who did not or those who did not know, internet use was significantly associated with thinking that the Web page helped them share information (p- .0007). Seventy-three percent (19/26) of physicians thought that Web page-based communication was easier than present methods to convey patient information, and 62% (16/26) replied that the Web-based communication met their expectation. Fifty-four percent (14/26) of physicians thought they were more likely to refer patients to our PICU because of the Web-based communication; this was significantly associated with physician assessment that the Web-based communication was easier than the present methods of communicating with referring physicians (p= .003). Conclusions: We conclude that both families and referring physicians find Web-based communications during a child's PICU hospitalization to be very helpful. We suggest that the Web-based PICU communications be developed and studied for both medical and economic impact. (Pediatr Crit Care Med 2004; 5:434 -439)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)434-439
Number of pages6
JournalPediatric Critical Care Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2004


  • Communications
  • Family-centered care
  • World Wide Web

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine

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