My Child is in Pain

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The My Child is in Pain web resource was designed to aid parents who want to gain information on how to help manage their child’s pain after surgery, for children’s charity WellChild. OCB Media collaborated with healthcare researchers and professionals at the School of Health at the University of Central Lancashire, the Royal College of Nursing, Edge Hill University and the University of California, to create an interactive online resource which provides detailed information and practical advice on providing effective comfort and managing a child’s pain.

Since the website’s launch in 2013, it has been used and recommended in many of the tertiary children’s hospitals in the UK, as well as in numerous District General Hospitals. Due to its universal appeal, the resource is also currently being recommended for use in the USA, New Zealand and Australia.


project challenges

Changes to the delivery of healthcare within the UK, USA, New Zealand and Australia have resulted in increasing numbers of children having surgery, invasive procedures and interventions as day case patients, placing the responsibility of pain management onto parents, rather than healthcare professionals.

The My Child is in Pain web resource was commissioned as a response to this new trend, and thus needed to provide parents with easy to digest, yet detailed information on what they could do to ensure their child’s comfort.
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Although we have made tremendous improvements in recent years with some effective treatments for children, there remain many challenges in the assessment and management of pain. The important role parents can play in managing their child’s pain has been clearly highlighted. However dealing with a child who has been in hospital for treatment or tests can be overwhelming and stressful and, until now, the information available to help has not always been consistent or useful to parents.

I am delighted that we have been able to take this first step to addressing this problem. By involving parents in identifying what information they need; how this information should be presented and in the design of the website, we are confident that this resource will be a real asset for parents.

Professor Bernie Carter,
Professor of Children’s Nursing, University of Central Lancashire


After conducting a research study with input from parents of children who had had day surgery, it became apparent that there were 5 key areas of pain management that were identified as being challenging.

Using these 5 areas, five scenarios were developed to provide parents with further information:

  • How do I know my child is in pain
  • Why is my child in pain
  • What can I do to help my child’s pain apart from give them medicine
  • How do pain medicines work
  • What should I know about giving pain medicines to my child

Content, in the form of text, videos and illustrations was then developed to answer these key questions.As the resource was to be available to access from across the globe, all content was checked for ease of understanding and clarity by pain experts from the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand.
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The benefits of the online resource are considerable, with parents now able to instantaneously access a free range of pertinent content and advice in one place. With so much information online offering ‘questionable’ information that cannot always be relied on. Through providing trustworthy sources, the resource helps parents understand how children respond to pain and guides them through how to tell if their child is in pain. It also explains how common pain medications works and what parents should know about giving medication to children.
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