Managing My Way was an innovative project that aimed to increase the responsibility disabled children and young people are able to take for managing their own health conditions. It was funded by the Department of Health.
Our researchers looked at the existing evidence on the involvement of disabled children and young people in their own health and care. They then worked with 40 children and young people and 40 healthcare professionals through a combination of focus groups, interviews and questionnaires.
Two key overarching themes emerged as a result of these discussions:
- the importance of getting interactions and relationships between professionals and young people right;
- the importance of developing young people’s ability, confidence and independence around managing their own care.
Working in partnership with disabled children and young people was identified as critical to fostering compliance with treatment programmes. Supporting independence from the earliest age was identified as a vital foundation for favourable transition to adult services and adult life.
The research findings were published in the report, Managing My Way, and highlights a number of recommendations, both at the structural and individual level, designed to improve young people’s experience of and participation in their healthcare.
The project team also produced posters for clinicians and health professionals to display in rooms.