Objective: This study evaluated an early intervention for children and their parents following pediatric accidental injury.
Method: Information booklets provided to participants within 72 h of the initial trauma detailed common responses to trauma, the common time course of symptoms, and suggestions for minimizing any post-trauma distress. Following admission for traumatic injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents, falls and sporting injuries a total of 103 children (aged 7-15) and their parents were evaluated at pre-intervention, 1 month, and 6 months post-trauma. The intervention (N = 33) was delivered to one of two hospitals, the second hospital was the control (N = 70).
Results: Analyses indicated that the intervention reduced child anxiety symptoms at 1-month follow-up and parental posttraumatic intrusion symptoms and overall posttraumatic symptoms at the 6-month follow-up. No other differences between the intervention and control groups were found.
Conclusion: Overall, the information-based early intervention is simple, cost-effective method of reducing child and parent distress post-trauma.