The purpose of this descriptive study was to describe the multidimensional nature of social capital as experienced by parental caregivers of children with special health care needs (CSHCN). Social capital is defined broadly as an investment in relationships. To define social capital more filly in the context of families of CSHCN, a structural definition was developed through a thematic analysis of focus-group discussions with parents. Twenty-three parents of CSHCN participated in focus groups that were audiotaped and transcribed for data analysis by the researcher. Thematic analysis of data was guided by van Kaam's four-phase phenomenological method: extraction of descriptive expressions, identification of dimensions, intuitive categorization of expressions, and identification of common elements. Implications for practice include the importance of reframing social support as an outcome of social interactions and focusing on social capital to facilitate a contextual assessment of support for families and CSHCN.
Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
- Children with special health care needs
- Social capital