First Advisor

Carlon, Sheila


Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions

Degree Name

MS Health Services Administration

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Number of Pages

42 pages


This study was conducted to determine the most effective and compassionate modes of communication for hospital staff at The Children's Hospital to use when conveying information to parents of children with cancer. Twelve parents whose children were four to twelve weeks post diagnosis were interviewed. Parents were asked a series of eleven open-ended questions addressing their experience with hospital staff's communication skills. Recurring themes resulting from the interviews include delivery of diagnosis, value of information, receptiveness to questions and availability of hospital staff. These themes reveal that parents value thorough and complete explanations of their child's diagnosis and treatment plans, hospital staff's willingness to answer all questions and hospital staff's availability in person, over the phone and through email. Staff at The Children's Hospital has demonstrated competency in their communication with parents of children with cancer. Health services administrators are responsible for implementing programs to further improve hospital staff's communication skills and to facilitate effective and compassionate communication.

Date of Award

Spring 2010

Location (Creation)

Denver, Colorado

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