In a population of hospitalized children, 45% of the 611 parents whose children qualified for day care stated they would have preferred day care if such an alternative had been available at the time and if the choice of type of care had been left to them.

Factors which seemed related to the parents' choice of care were the child's age, the distance from home to hospital, the parents' education, the parents' perception of the degree of safety afforded by hospitalization, and the ability to make the necessary arrangements to care for the child at home following day care. No relationship was found between parental choice of care and such variables as type of day care recommended (medical or surgical), sex of child, number of employed family members, occupational class, and family income.

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