OBJECTIVE: Pediatric patient's pain and anxiety are insufficiently treated in Emergency Departments (EDs). Implementation of new evidence-based knowledge into paediatric clinical practice is often a protracted process, as the barriers and facilitators among health care professionals for treating pain and anxiety in children are unknown.
METHOD: We conducted hypothesis generating interviews with health care professionals and coded the transcriptions into eight main themes. A survey was constructed to test the hypotheses, with one question for each theme. The survey was distributed in two EDs.
RESULTS: Barriers: fear of overdose (58.9%) lack of knowledge in different treatment options (56.7%), children or parents cannot cooperate (55%). Facilitators: more education (69.4%), more time to treat every patient (55.2%), standardized treatment regime (50%).
CONCLUSION: Our study finds potential barriers and facilitators among health care professionals regarding sufficient treatments of pain and anxiety among paediatric patients in EDs. It suggests that education of health care professionals regarding assessing pain, administrating analgesics and anxiolytics and handling uncooperative children is necessary in order to improve treatment of children in EDs.