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When a child is diagnosed with severe allergies: An autoethnographic account

Inā tautohutia tētahi tamaiti he tamaiti mate pāwera: He tuhinga haukiri ā-iwi

Cassandra Carstensen, RN, MN, Nurse Educator, Southern Institute of Technology, Invercargill, NZ
Elaine Papps, RN, PhD, Senior Lecturer, Eastern Institute of Technology, Taradale, NZ
Shona Thompson, PhD, Research Fellow, Eastern Institute of Technology, Taradale, NZ

Reference
Carstensen, C., Papps, E., & Thompson, S. (2018). When a child is diagnosed with severe allergies: An autoethnographic account. Nursing Praxis in New Zealand, 34(2), 6-16.

 

Abstract
This article reports research that explored the experience of raising a child in New Zealand with severe allergies and the potential for an anaphylactic reaction. Utilising an autoethnographic research approach, it provides details of managing the diagnosis and day to day life of a child with severe allergies through narratives written from the perspective of the child’s mother who is also a nurse. A thematic analysis of the autoethnographic narratives produced four emergent themes: Being the mother; Being a nurse; Who is supporting us?; and Desperately seeking knowledge. The first discusses the mother’s emotional response to her child’s severe allergy diagnosis and her ability to cope. The theme ‘Being a nurse’ highlights the conflicting roles resulting from being both a mother of an ill child and a nurse employed at the hospital where care was sought. The third theme poses the question, who provides support for families of a child with severe allergies as the child grows, goes to school and engages in the wider community? The final theme highlights the difficulties one family faced finding and accessing reliable information to help them cope with a child’s severe allergies. This research provides a deeply personal insight into the impact of allergies. It highlights a need for further resources in the form of support, consistent information, empathetic care and education throughout the life span of the child, and the need for funded adrenaline auto-injectors.

Ngā ariā matua
Ka tautoko tēnei tuhinga i ētahi rangahau tūhura i ngā wheako o tētahi matua whakatupu tamariki i Aotearoa he mate pāwera hōhonu tōna me ngā huarahi e pā mai ai tētahi katinga korokoro ohorere. Nā te whakamahi i ngā huarahi rangahau haukiri ā-iwi, kua oti tētahi tuhinga mō te whakahaere i te tohutanga i te mate me te noho ia rā o tētahi tamaiti e tino pāngia nei e te mate pāwera taimaha, he me āta tuhi e tana māmā, he tapuhi hoki ia. E whā ngā kōwae whakaaro i puta i muri i tētahi tātaritanga kōwae o ngā pūrākau haukiri ā-iwi: Te noho hei whaea; Te noho hei tapuhi; Ko wai kei te tautoko i a mātou? me Te Rapu i te mātauranga. Ka matapaki te tuatahi o ēnei i te urupare ā-ngākau a te whaea ki te tohutanga o te mate pāwera i roto i tana tamaiti me tōna kaha ki te kawe i ngā uauatanga. I takea mai te kōwae whakaaro ‘Te noho hei tapuhi’ i ngā tūranga e rua o te whaea, hei whaea o tētahi tamaiti māuiui, hei tapuhi hoki i te hōhipera i tiakina ai te tamaiti. I raro i te kōwae tuatoru ka tupu te whakaaro, ko wai mā kei te tautoko i ngā whānau o ngā tamariki he taumaha tonu ōna mate pāwera i te tupunga ake o te tamaiti, i muri hoki i te haerenga ki te kura me te noho tahitanga ki te hapori nui tonu? Hei whakaari te kōwae whakamutunga i ngā uauatanga i mua i tētahi whānau kotahi ina kimi
rātou i ngā whakamārama pono hei āwhina i a rātou ki te tiaki i tētahi tamaiti tino māuiui i te mate pāwera. Ka kitea i tēnei rangahau ētahi whakaaro mutunga mai o te whaiaro , mō te pānga o te mate pāwera. Ka puta mai ko te hiahia kia horaina mai ētahi atu rauemi, ko te tautoko tērā, ko te mōhiotanga tōkeke tērā, ko te tiaki atawhai i te tangata me te akoranga i ngā rā katoa o te oranga o te tamaiti, me te hiahia kia homai he ngira whāngai kano adrenaline, he mea tautoko ā-pūtea hoki.

Keywords / Ngā kupu matua
Childhood allergies/Ngā māuiui pāwera i te tamarikitanga, anaphylactic reaction/katinga korokoro ohorere, motherhood/te whaeatanga, nurse empathy/te aroha o te tapuhi, information/ngā mōhiotanga, autoethnography/te tuhinga haukiri ā-iwi.

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