Publications by authors named "Thomas M B Berger"

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Swiss neonatal caregivers express diverging views on parental involvement in shared decision-making for extremely premature infants.

Acta Paediatr 2021 Mar 3. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Department of Neonatology, University Hospital Zurich, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.

Aim: Due to scarce available national data, this study assessed current attitudes of neonatal caregivers regarding decisions on life-sustaining interventions, and their views on parents' aptitude to express their infant's best interest in shared decision-making.

Methods: Self-administered web-based quantitative empirical survey. All 552 experienced neonatal physicians and nurses from all Swiss NICUs were eligible.

Results: There was a high degree of agreement between physicians and nurses (response rates 79% and 70%, respectively) that the ability for social interactions was a minimal criterion for an acceptable quality of life. A majority stated that the parents' interests are as important as the child's best interest in shared decision-making. Only a minority considered the parents as the best judges of what is their child's best interest. Significant differences in attitudes and values emerged between neonatal physicians and nurses. The language area was very strongly associated with the attitudes of neonatal caregivers.

Conclusion: Despite clear legal requirements and societal expectations for shared decision-making, survey respondents demonstrated a gap between their expressed commitment to shared decision-making and their view on parental aptitude to formulate their infant's best interest. National guidelines need to address these barriers to shared decision-making to promote a more uniform nationwide practice.
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March 2021