Improving the quality of life of family members of ICU patients

Funded by: 

Seed Awards

Project Investigators:

Dr. Phạm Kiều Nguyệt Oanh, Vice – Head Viet Anh Ward, Hospital for Tropical Diseases 
Nguyễn Quốc Giang, Public and Community Engagement coordinator, OUCRU HCM 


A better understanding of the stress faced by families of critically ill patients is important to improve relationships and trust between medical staff and families.

This project sought to explore and respond to this issue: 

  • To evaluate the stress levels and experience of relatives/carers of critically ill patients in the Viet Anh and Adult ICU Wards at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases. 
  • To explore appropriate methods of engagement to reduce the stress experience and improve the coping mechanisms of these carers.  
  • To provide health information about communicable diseases and care for patients with residual neurological disability through participatory activities with carers, which provided opportunities for communication with health staff.  

Project activities: 

  • 4 x focus group discussions and 23 individual interviews with carers and health workers to explore the difficulties they experience with patients in the ICU.  
  • Two health talks were given to carers on topics raised through the interviews/FGDs of ‘tetanus disease’ and ‘how to reduce stress’.  
  • Art therapy workshops were provided with 2 groups of carers to facilitate discussion about their concerns, support one another, and increase positive thinking amongst carers.  
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