Returning to school after a burn injury; our new practice

Ms Linda Quinn1, Ms Karla Matousek1, Ms Emma Carroll1, Ms Margot McDougall1, Dr Anne Gannoni1, Mr  Bernard Carney1

1Women’s And Children’s Hospital

Returning to school after a burn injury; our new practice.


Returning to school can be a major step for burn-injured children, their family, staff and pupils at the receiving school. Attending school is a vital part of a child’s life and development both for gaining academic achievements and developing social skills. The time it takes to return to school can be an important indicator of their emotional adjustment and functional capacity.


We carried out an audit in 2015 to determine whether children are experiencing difficulties returning to school following a burn injury. If they were, what were the factors hindering this process and what can be put in place to assist with this transition?

Unfortunately this retrospective study had a low participation rate and did not provide us with the numbers and results we had hoped for. On a positive note it has led to a more cohesive approach to our burned injured school aged children. The relationship between the Burns Service and the Hospital School has been strengthened and we believe this will improve the transition back to school. The Burns Service now refers all admitted school aged children to the Hospital school which has opened up the channels of communication with the child’s enrolled school. This assists with identifying any potential issues the child may have in returning to school, and to begin this preparation early.

This poster will outline the new initiatives we have introduced to all of our burn injured school aged children.

Linda has worked at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital for the majority of her 30 year nursing career post registration. She has extensive paediatric surgical experience and has specialised in paediatric burns nursing since 2006. She has post graduate qualifications in both paediatric and burns nursing.

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