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OP-139 Use of happiness toolkit in paediatric outpatient for children with social -emotional difficulties
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  1. Linda Sharif1,
  2. Farhana Sharif1,
  3. Aoife Corcroran1,
  4. Sayid Rizvi1,
  5. Farhana Sharif2,
  6. Farhana Sharif3
  1. 1Department of Paediatrics, Mullingar Regional Hospital, Co.Weastmeath, Ireland
  2. 2Clinical professor of Paediatric, RCSI University of Medicine and Health Science, Dublin, Ireland
  3. 3Clinical Associate Professor of Paediatrics, University College Dublin, Ireland

Abstract

Aim The ‘Happiness Toolkit’ is a set of six evidence-based self-care skills that have been shown to boost self-esteem, develop resilience and promote positive mental health in children. This study explores the effectiveness of this Toolkit in engaging families of children with social emotional/behavioural and/or mental health issues while awaiting assessment by Psychology or Psychiatry services.

Material and Method Prospective pilot study was conducted in paediatric outpatient clinics at Mullingar Regional hospital over a 4 week period. All patients who presented to the clinic were screened with ASQ: SE2 or PSC on presentation after information leaflets were given to parents/patients regarding the study. 23 patients were recruited in the study who screened positive using the two screening tools. parents were contacted 4–6 week after they were enrolled in the study using a structured questionnaire.

Results A total of 23 patients were recruited of which 3 withdraw from the study. The age range of the 20 patients who screened positive for social emotional/mental health issues ( 1–5 years n= 5 (25%), 6–10 years n=2 (10%), 11–16 years n=12 (60%). Of these 10 children (50%) were awaiting psychology/psychiatry appointments. Half of them 50% had been waiting for more than one year. 90% of patients reported improvements in their symptoms of which 50% reported complete cessation of the symptoms while 10% reported no change. Majority of parents felt that their relationship with their child has improved and their children were more open regarding their issues.

Conclusions This study highlighted the effectiveness of the ‘The Happiness Toolkit’ in managing children with social emotional and mental health issues in an outpatient setting with a significant number reporting cessation of their symptoms. These are promising results to deal with an ever increasing Tsunami of mental health issues in children using the toolkit while awaiting psychology and psychiatry services.

  • Use of Happiness toolkit

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