Health of Infants, Children, and Adolescents

Posted on March 4, 2024 by Cheapest Assignment

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Health of Infants, Children, and Adolescents


The psychosocial theory is essential for a pediatric patient to assess their psychological health condition throughout their lifespan. Apart from this, it helps the patient to improve the social nature and social relationships with humans. Registered Nurse (RN) plays a crucial role in this assessment where the extent of the psychosocial problems is assessed and then accurate diagnosis is carried out. Finally, using theories, the RN documents the other information. The current essay topic is based on a case study where a pediatric patient, 4-year-old Ava, is apprehensive about getting sick; a psychosocial problem. She misses friends, does not understand why grown-ups wear facemasks and is confused about why her teacher said not to hug her friends. Thus, her family, worried about her well-being, asked me, an RN, to assess her problem and take the right action. The essay is based on assessing her problem using an assessment tool and psychosocial development theory and then, integrating a convenient care plan to support Ava.

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Psychosocial development theory

This theory was explained by Erikson which consists of 8 stages that are observed among humans. Concerning the case, Ava is 4-year-old and according to the theory, the child is in the 3rd stage of Erik Erikson’s psychosocial development theory (, 2022). Ava’s case matches this theory which suggests that Ava is trying to connect with as many friends and family members to explore initiating activities and interpersonal skills. The connection is purposeful and Ava is willing to interact with friends and family members face-to-face and not through other platforms. For instance, according to the theory, their age is for playing out new roles with the people around her and thus, her psychosocial well-being is hampered when her teacher does not allow her to hug friends, she is not getting friends for playing (, 2022). However, she is not sharing her toys with anyone which suggests that she did not develop empathy to see things from the perspective of other children. She wants interaction and to be surrounded by close members. Therefore, as per the theory, she needs to be surrounded by friends and family members to explore different skills, and experiences and develop creativity. The theory also states that this “Initiative vs. Guilt” stage is responsible for developing creativity among children ages 3-5. Thus, it may hamper her psychosocial development if her family does not focus on these factors.

The COVID-19 pandemic might have some negative impact on her psychosocial development because the pandemic restricted the movement of everyone. She might not get a face-to-face interaction opportunity with her friends since family members are concerned about their children (, 2022). According to the theory, 4-year-old Ava needs friends and close members to interact with, explore new activities, plan activities, and do initiatives. Thus, due to the mass restricted movement, she might not have so many friends to explore new activities. Apart from this, she does not understand why people are wearing masks. Perhaps, she is unable to see the complete face of the people and thus, her exploration is getting hampered. UNICEF noticed that children under age 5 should not wear masks because it can hamper the interest and overall safety of a child (, 2022a). Thus, she has a question regarding why grown-ups wear masks.

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Mental health assessment tool

Several mental health assessment tools are available from which, the Paediatric Symptom Checklist (PSC) can be a great selection for the assessment because the GP already used questionnaires for Ava to understand her mental health condition. RN can ask 17-35 questions to Ava for knowing her mental health condition and the reason behind it. There are 3 types of PSCs (PSC-Y, PSC, and PSC-17) which are usually used for pediatric patients aged 4 to 16 years to understand depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses. Concerning this, RN can ask at least 17 questions and a maximum of 35 questions because it bears a 68-100% specificity and 80-95% sensitivity to understand the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on Ava’s mental health (, 2022). PSC usually involves the child and before that, proper consents are taken from the parents to ask different questions to the child. Firstly, the RN needs to start by explaining the questionnaire and study. After that, the questions end with “psychoeducation advice” that can be helpful for Ava to recover from psychological distress (, 2022). The RN needs to assess the symptoms based on three ratings (“never”, “sometimes” and “often”) which are marked as 0, 1, and 2 as well. Lastly, the total score needs to be calculated, and based on a cut-off mark, the RN will determine the mental health condition of Ava (, 2022).

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Person and family-centered care (PFCC)

PFCC is essential to incorporate in the professional practice of pediatricians to deliver the appropriate needs of a mentally ill child. Firstly, the RN needs to understand the principles of PFCC which is based on delivering care according to the patient’s needs. Similarly, the RN needs to understand the problem of Ava and deliver a “loop of care”. The RN needs to consider the resources and their proper allocation to ensure a better health outcome. It is not only about Ava’s satisfaction with the PFCC; however, the RN must consider the satisfaction of the family too. The RN needs to involve family members of Ava and can guide each family member individually because she is missing the entire family members. However, it has been found that collaboration between the patient, RN, and family members will deliver better care to Ava (Melbourne, 2022). The RN needs to follow four steps to deliver PFCC to Ava. These include understanding the principles, delivering care to the patient collaboratively, involving the care center, and Co-designing the “healthcare service” (, 2022). Here, the immunization will involve information sharing about the pandemic and mental health conditions; respecting and showing dignity, collaboration, and participation.

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Caregiver education

Several guidelines are available that can be applied by the mother of Ava. The RN must distribute the information to her mother as well as other family members to support Ava in recovering from a mental health illness. UNICEF has provided some tips that can be applied by Ava’s mother. For instance, her mother can make eye contact with Ava and can give “undivided attention” while talking and listening to her child (, 2022a). Apart from this, her mother should make her child feel that all the family members are present with her for support. Ava’s mother can also focus on her interests to make her child feel connected. Another problem of Ava is, that she is concerned about the grownups who are wearing masks. This issue can be solved by delivering information and avoiding wearing masks when talking to Ava (if the COVID-19 test is negative). UNICEF has also provided tips for talking with children regarding the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure they do not feel separated and it can be learned by Ava’s mother (, 2022b). Ava’s teacher does not allow her to hug her friends; however, her mother can convince the teacher to allow Ava to hug her friends a little to help her recover from this state.

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Professional support services

There are a bunch of “professional support services” that can be accessed by Ava’s mother. For instance, Health-direct Australia is available from where Ava’s mother can get health information regarding Ava’s mental condition. Usually, the RN provides professional services and Ava’s mother can call 1800022222 to speak to the RN (, 2022). Apart from this, “Children’s Physio Sydney” provides support services for pediatrics, where Ava’s mother can contact and get support. CAMHS provides professional support for the child as well. This type of service involves training and providing education to the patient and the family members (, 2022). Concerning this, the RN can provide information regarding the training schedule, cost, persons involved, and effectiveness. Some of the information is provided in the previous section and besides that, RNs can practice volunteering time, communicating often, building a relationship, understanding the challenges, and allocating resources correctly. The RN must also determine the risk and protective factors that are associated with the mental health condition of Ava.

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The essay aimed to assess and solve the mental health case of Ava who is 4 years old and is facing some issues of loneliness and missingness wherever her family members leave after dropping her to Kindergarten. Besides, she misses her friends and she is concerned about why grownups wear masks. Thus, firstly, the essay demonstrated that Ava’s mental health issue is associated with Erikson’s 3rd stage of psychosocial development theory, and in this stage, Ava will genuinely require the company of her family members or friends to do activities, gather information, do creativity, and explore many things. However, Ava is somehow getting separated from her friends and family members and she wants more attention and closeness for her comfort. Hence, the essay has provided some information for an RN to assist her mother and Ava. Firstly, a PSC tool was highlighted to assess her problem using a questionnaire and then, information regarding PFCC and Professional services was given. The essay provided information for Ava, Ava’s parents, and the RN to help Ava cope with the situation.

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References, 2022. National framework for protecting Australia’s children indicators, Policy framework – Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. [online] Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022. [online] Erik Erikson – Psychosocial Development. Available at: <> [Accessed 28 July 2022]., 2022. Pediatric Symptom Checklist. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022. Online Survey on Psychological Impact of COVID-19 Epidemic on School-age Children – Full Text View – [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022. What is infant mental health, why is it important, and how can it be supported? [online]. Available at: <> [accessed 31 July 2022]., 2022. Medical Home Portal – Mental Health Screening for Children & Teens. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022].

Melbourne, T., 2022. Policies and Procedures: Patient and Family-Centred Care. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022. Child protection, health and safety services. [online] Raising Children Network. Available at: <> [Accessed 31 July 2022]., 2022. COVID-19 and children in Australia. [online] Raising Children Network. Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022. Erik Erikson’s Stages of Psychosocial Development. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 30 July 2022]., 2022. Everything you need to know about children and mask use. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022a. Tips for parents on how to deal with their child’s mental health. [online] Available at: <,personality%2C%20or%20share%20a%20story> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022b. How teachers can talk to children about coronavirus disease (COVID-19). [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 29 July 2022]., 2022. camhsm. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 31 July 2022].

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