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Title: The impact of army life on a mother's decision-making when her child is unwell during the out-of-hours period
Author: Bernthal, Elizabeth
ISNI:       0000 0004 2716 1306
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2011
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This thesis describes a three-stage project using a qualitative case study approach. It explores in what way the features of Army life affect the daily lives of Army parents, how aspects of Army life influence the decision-making of mothers, and what support Army mothers expect when their child is unwell after their primary health care centre has closed (called the out-of-hours period). The study was conducted within an Army garrison in England. It occurred during an intense period of overseas operational deployment that left mothers as temporary lone parents for many months. Out-of-hours service provision had changed from an Army clinic within walking distance to an NHS provider located over thirty miles away. Phase One, using focus groups with 24 parents, identified how Army life affected parents and what their expectations were for health care provision in the out-of-hours period. During Phase Two, seven of these parents were interviewed to explore the themes identified in the previous stage in greater depth. Phase Three involved interviews with a further seven mothers who had accessed the out-of-hours clinic when their child had been unwell, to investigate the decision-making process that led to a consultation with a health professional. This study provides a rich and detailed description of how disruption, mobility and enforced separation affect parents living with young children within a garrison in England and the coping strategies that mothers used. It is distinctive as it theorises that emotional vulnerability caused by anxiety and fear during military enforced separation challenges a mother’s fundamental sense of belonging. An algorithm developed from the findings demonstrates that a partner’s presence influences whether the mother calls health care services as a first or last resort. Thus, it makes an important contribution to the development of both civilian and military knowledge regarding a mother’s decision-making behaviour and her expectations for care when her child is unwell, particularly when a lone parent
Supervisor: Lattimer, Valerie ; Burgess, A. ; Lathlean, Judith ; Gobbi, Mary Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: RT Nursing