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Publication . Article . 2019

The experience of carers of children with cerebral palsy living in rural areas of Ghana who have received no rehabilitation services: A qualitative study

Gifty Gyamah Nyante; Christine Carpenter;
Closed Access
Published: 16 Aug 2019 Journal: Child: Care, Health and Development, volume 45, pages 815-822 (issn: 0305-1862, eissn: 1365-2214, Copyright policy )
Publisher: Wiley

Aim This study aims to explore the experiences of carers of children with cerebral palsy living in rural areas of Ghana who have received no rehabilitation services. Background Cerebral palsy is the most common chronic disability from childhood, which needs lifelong rehabilitation. Most of the population living in rural communities in Ghana have virtually no form of rehabilitation services for their chronic disabling conditions. Caring for children with disability are known to be challenging especially when coupled with environmental challenges in rural communities. Results Purposive and snowball techniques were used to recruit 12 carers, age 22 to 68 years, of children with cerebral palsy aged 7 to 15 years. Two main themes, developing personal beliefs to support the caregiving role and the demands that shape the experience of caring, emerged from six subthemes and 25 theme clusters of the narratives of the carers. The essential structure of the phenomenon demonstrated the complex interaction of personal and environmental factors in harmony with the actual demands to influence the experiences of participants positively or negatively. Positively, carers achieved coping, committed to caring, hoped for the future, and accepted the condition. However, negatively, carers described the triggering factors of feeling of despair and sorrow as frustration and lack of understanding of the condition, felt stigmatized, and perceived the child was going through pain and suffering. Conclusions Carers derived strength from their religious and spiritual beliefs to balance the demands of caregiving. Findings could be used as basis for developing interventions to support carers and inform new strategies for rehabilitation service and sensitization of community members about inclusion of children with disabilities.

Subjects by Vocabulary

Microsoft Academic Graph classification: Psychology Rural area Rehabilitation medicine.medical_treatment medicine Cerebral palsy medicine.disease Qualitative research Population education.field_of_study education Psychological intervention Gerontology Feeling media_common.quotation_subject media_common Coping (psychology)


Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health, Developmental and Educational Psychology, Pediatrics, Perinatology and Child Health, Access to Information, Adaptation, Psychological, Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Caregivers, Cerebral Palsy, Child, Disabled Children, Female, Ghana, Health Literacy, Health Services Accessibility, Humans, Male, Medicine, African Traditional, Middle Aged, Needs Assessment, Poverty, Qualitative Research, Religion, Rural Population, Social Stigma, Social Support, Young Adult

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