Psychosocial Impact of Childhood Cancer on Parents with Children Diagnosed with Cancer: The Case of Parents Receiving Service at Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital

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Cancer, one of the non-communicable diseases is gaining momentum in Ethiopia. As the country has only one cancer treatment center for both adults and children, the challenges associated with that are immense. In line with that, this study, focused on identifying the psychosocial impacts parents of children diagnosed with cancer have and how they cope with those impacts. Qualitative approach particularly case study design was used in this study. The tools for primary data collection were in-depth interviews and focus group discussions in order to gain in-depth information. Purposive sampling technique was used to select participants leading to sixteen parents of children with cancer who are currently following either admitted or as an outpatient to be involved in the study. In addition to that, three health care professionals were involved as key informants. The findings of the study reveal that parents with children diagnosed with cancer had encountered different psychological, social and physical impacts that are interdependent on one another. In addition to that, parents use different problem and emotional focused coping strategies to mitigate the challenges they encounter. Different informal and formal support systems also assist them to cope. However, the findings also show that the support parents are receiving is more inclined towards social support neglecting the psychological problems they have. The findings of the study present social work implication in the areas of practice, education, research and policy.