Pediatric Palliative Care

Pediatric palliative care is specialized medical care for children with serious illness. This type of care is focused on providing children with relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of a serious illness, whatever the diagnosis. 

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The goal is to improve quality of life for both the child and the family. Palliative care is provided by a team of doctors, nurses, and other specialists who work with a patient’s primary health care team to provide an extra layer of support. Pediatric palliative care is appropriate at any stage in a serious illness, and can be provided together with curative treatment.

Our Approach

At University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, pediatric palliative care is provided by the pediatric advanced and complex care team.

Our services include:
  • Treatments for relieving pain and other symptoms such as nausea, fatigue, breathlessness, depression, and anxiety
  • Assistance and support in making difficult medical decisions
  • Help in making sure that children are as comfortable and active as possible
  • Access to complementary treatments, such as guided imagery and self-hypnosis training
  • Assistance with family challenges such as difficult communications, coping with the stress of a serious illness or the unique needs of children to understand and cope with the serious illness
  • Assistance with coordination of services, especially between home, hospital and clinic

The home-based pediatric advanced and complex care team program offers:
  • Intermittent nursing and social work visits at home
  • Expertise in pain and symptom management with a 24/7 nurse call line and visit availability
  • Family support for siblings and others involved in the child’s care
  • Secure video visits with providers and staff
  • Care coordination

Conditions We Treat

Palliative care may be especially helpful if your child has a serious illness such as:

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