Hospitalization of patients in the intensive care units always has negative consequences such as anxiety and concern for patients and their families. This study aimed to investigate the effect of programmed family presence in intensive care units on patients' and families' anxiety.
This was a quasi-experimental study conducted in Iran. The eligible patients and a member of their families were assigned into two groups (N=80) through convenience sampling. The family members in the experimental group were allowed to attend twice a day for 15 minutes in a planned way beside the patient and contribute to their clinical primary care. In the control group, the family members had a strict limitation to visit their patients based on the usual policy. Anxiety in both groups at the beginning and on the third day of patient's admission was measured, using Spielberger's questionnaire. The data were analyzed with SPSS Ver. 13.
The mean score of anxiety in the control group did not show significant difference in patients and in families, however it had decreased significantly in the experimental group after the intervention for both patients and families. The results showed that mean differences between the two groups was statistically significant in patients and families.
The planned presence of the family of patients in CCU played a crucial role in reducing the anxiety of patients and their family. Furthermore, it is recommended that strategies of visiting policy in ICUs should be revised and the possibility be provided for the families' planned presence and participation in the patient care.
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