Use of a camp setting to provide medical information to siblings of pediatric cancer patients.J Cancer Educ 1990; 5(1):21-6JC
It has been reported that siblings of children with cancer often lack information and understanding about their brother's or sister's disease and treatment. The purpose of this paper is twofold: (1) to describe a camping program for siblings, which was designed, in part, to provide these children with age-appropriate medical information; and (2) to report the results of a study which examined how this intervention influenced siblings' knowledge and understanding of their brother's or sister's disease. Ninety siblings between the ages of 6 and 17 who completed a pre/post camp medical information questionnaire participated in this investigation. The results revealed that younger (6- to 11-year-old) siblings attending camp for at least the second time and older (12- to 17-year-old) siblings attending camp for the first time experienced significant (p less than .05) improvement in their overall knowledge and understanding of their brother's or sister's cancer. The results also revealed positive changes in the desired direction with respect to siblings' fear or their friends' fear about catching their brother's or sister's cancer. The results of this study provide a conceptual model for other pediatric cancer facilities engaged in developing intervention programs for siblings.