Palliative care services are available to families at home 24/7, all year long.
Palliative care services are available to children under 18 years of age and to their families, in case of debilitating and life threatening diseases.
Categories of life-limiting and life threatening diseases in children’s palliative care:
Group 1: life-threatening conditions for which curative treatment may be feasible but may fail, where access to palliative care services may be necessary alongside curative treatment and/or if treatment fails. e.g., oncological conditions (cancer).
Group 2: conditions, where premature death is inevitable, where there may be long periods of intensive treatment aimed at prolonging life and allowing participation in normal activities. e.g., cystic fibrosis.
Group 3: progressive conditions without curative treatment options, where treatment is exclusively palliative and may commonly extend over many years. e.g., Batten disease, mucopolisaccharydosis.
Group 4: irreversible but non-progressive conditions with complex healthcare needs leading to complications and likelihood of premature death. e.g., severe cerebral palsy and multiple disabilities following brain or spinal cord insult.
Palliative care for children is provided by a multidisciplinary team of specialists according to the child’s and his/her family’s emotional, spiritual, physical and social needs during period of his illness, as well as during the grieving period. Medical services are provided by a doctor and nurse. Psychological, social and spiritual support is provided by a psychologist, psychotherapist, social worker and chaplain. Support during the grieving period, which is an essential part of palliative care, is provided by a chaplain, psychologist and social worker.