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Making the lives of children and young people more visible in Europe

McQuinn, Sara (2017) Making the lives of children and young people more visible in Europe. Master of Science thesis, Dublin City University.

Making the Lives of Children and Young People More Visible in Europe Background: The health and well-being of children and young people, i.e. those aged zero up to and including 24 (UNCRC, 1989; UNDESA, 2008), is of significant importance to European public health. Current national health information systems differ significantly (Rigby et al., 2002), and as of yet, there is no coherent health information strategy available for Europe. The fragmented databases, health information inequalities, and overlap of data, results in a scattered and unsustainable health information situation (Bogaert and Van Oyen, 2017; Kilpeläinen et al., 2012; Verschuuren et al., 2013), in which many children’s lives to become invisible to European health surveillance and research (Köhler, 2017). Indicators, based on measurements of child and young people’s health and well-being , including comparable indicators across countries, play a particularly important role to identifying progress, problems and priorities over time, stimulates research and drives investment (Rigby et al., 2003, Bradshaw et al., 2006; Wolfe, 2014). Current EU multi-dimensional approaches to measuring and monitoring children and young people’s health and well\being can be criticized for under-representing the needs of the young (Rigby, 2009; Rigby et al., 2002). There is an inability to compare children and young people’s health and well-being across Europe in a standard and valid way. Lack of data can impact a full understanding of the health and well-being, and their determinants, in Europe’s children (Alexander et al., 2015; Cattaneo et al., 2012; Köhler, 2017; Rigby et al., 2003), making it increasingly difficult to implement evidence-based policies which best meet their needs and maximise their quality of lives. Aims: 1. Report on sources of data on children and young people’s health and well-being across Europe. 2. Report on ways of making more effective use of data to examine the lives of children and young people in Europe, i.e. to establish consensus on an agreed set of indicators to measure and monitor the health and well-being of children and young people. Methodology: 1. Health professional questionnaire containing open and closed ended questions on health information sources and their utilisation, accessibility and data comparability. 2. Delphi Technique, including indicator selection and a three- round questionnaire containing questions on individual indicator importance, priority by ranking, and its availability. Results: 1. A total of 294 health professionals responded and offered a broad perspective on the different sources of routine and research data used across Europe. Lack of data, particularly local-level data and data on children whom are members of marginalized groups, were of concern. Six key recommendations were established on how to make more effective use of current data on children and young people’s health and well-being in Europe, one of which was to increase cross-European comparability. 2. A total of 94 indicators spanned across 16 domains, within 4 dimensions, were selected and presented to panellists. Consensus was reached, and a final set of 32 key indicators was identified. Of these, 21 indicators were reported as widely available. The remaining 11 were reported as not widely available, however recommended by panellists to be made mandatory for all Member States to collect. Conclusions: The gaps in health information on European children and young people’s lives should be addressed. However, despite the need for more data collection, it is also possible to make more effective use of existing data. These study results could be used to provide a basis on which an international set of children and young people’s health and well-being indicators could be established and implemented for Europe. An overarching recommendation in this research was the establishment of a European Health Information System, with a responsibility to make European children, and their lives more visible.
Item Type:Thesis (Master of Science)
Date of Award:November 2017
Additional Information:This was part of the Bridge-Health project. The BRIDGE Health project BRIDGE Health stands for BRidging Information and Data Generation for Evidence-based Health policy and research. The BRIDGE Health project aims to prepare the transition towards a sustainable and integrated EU health information system for both public health and research purposes. The project was launched in May 2015 and will be running for 30 months. It includes 31 partners in 16 countries. The project bridges the best of EU projects in domains of population and health system monitoring, indicator development, health examination surveys, environment and health, population injury and disease registries, clinical and administrative health data collection systems and methods of health systems monitoring and evaluation. BRIDGE Health is supported under the EU action of the Public Health Programme implemented by the Consumers, Health and Food Executive Agency of the European Commission.
Supervisor(s):Staines, Anthony and Sweeney, Mary Rose
Uncontrolled Keywords:Child health; Comparative health; Health indicators; European public health;Child and adolescent health
Subjects:Medical Sciences > Epidemiology
Medical Sciences > Health
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science and Health > School of Nursing and Human Sciences
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License. View License
Funders:EU Other
ID Code:22097
Deposited On:05 Apr 2018 08:24 by Anthony Staines . Last Modified 24 Jan 2023 14:10

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