AIMS AND OBJECTIVES : To examine underlying factor structure of the Critical Care Family Needs Inventory—Emergency Department across three countries to identify similarities and differences.
BACKGROUND : Understanding family needs assists nurses to provide family‐centred care to deliver optimal outcomes for critically ill patients and their families in Emergency Departments.
DESIGN : Retrospective secondary analyses of data collected in three cross‐sectional surveys.
METHODS : Convenience samples involved recruitment of family members accompanying a critically ill relative into four Emergency Departments in Australia (2), South Africa (1) and Taiwan (1). Item‐matched raw data from 374 responses to 40 items from the surveys were collated and analysed using confirmatory factor analysis methods. Reporting adhered to an adapted STROBE checklist.
RESULTS : The factor structure of the 40‐item Critical Care Family Needs Inventory—Emergency Department differed between countries. Analyses of the Australian data revealed a four‐factor solution comprised of 18 items across four categories of family need (support, communication, participation and comfort); the Taiwanese data also demonstrated a four‐factor solution comprised of 13 items (support, communication, participation and comfort); alternatively, the South African data revealed a two‐factor solution comprised of nine items (communication and participation). Fifteen items did not match across the countries. However, loading for four items common across all three countries was related to family participation (3) and communication (1).
CONCLUSIONS : The findings suggest family members from different countries responded to Critical Care Family Needs Inventory—Emergency Department items in different ways. Consistent with concepts of family‐centred care, the study identified participation and communication needs that were common across the countries. The outcomes illustrate the challenge of providing appropriate care for family members during critical illness of a relative in the ED.
RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE : Family perceptions of important needs during critical illness in the Emergency Department differ across countries; hence, the Critical Care Family Needs Inventory—Emergency Department has limited utility. Participation and communication needs emerged as common family needs.