Meds IQ | Patient Support | Communication with patients/parents

Side-effects from children’s medicines (parent leaflet)

Use of this resource implies acceptance of the Privacy Policy available here.


Evidence that parents information needs were not being adequately addressed in the aftermath of a suspected adverse drug reaction in their child.


To enhance communication between families and health practitioners when a side-effect from a child’s medicine is suspected. 


The leaflet aims to empower parents, by sending the message that it is ok to ask questions of health professionals when they are worried that their child might have had a side effect. The leaflet suggests questions parent might want to ask and also advises them about steps that they can take to report side-effects via the yellow card scheme.  


The leaflet was piloted in 17 consultations with families of children with suspected adverse drug reactions. Feedback indicated that the leaflet supported clinicians/ parents in their communication, prompting clinicians to give information they would not normally have covered and giving parents ‘permission’ to ask questions they might not have asked.  


Suggestions for further implementation

The leaflet could guide health practitioners in communicating with parents and children about adverse drug reactions, helping them to anticipate what questions parents might ask.

Challenges and learning

Include more of a focus on how to ensure uptake of the leaflets in practice.

Quality assurance/MHRA registration

Extensive review and evaluation as part of an in depth NIHR research study. The leaflet has also been approved by Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.