This Core Care Pathway is designed to provide a framework for the care of any baby, child or young person with a life-threatening or life-limiting condition. It aims to ensure that families experience a co-ordinated approach to family centred care throughout their child’s life. There should be clear and open communication and support to enable the family to build up and maintain access to an appropriate network of support, regardless of where they are cared for, whether in hospital, at home, or in a children’s hospice.


core care pathway coverThe document proposes a core framework for professionals working with children and young people to support the local development of an integrated care pathway for children diagnosed or recognised as having a life-threatening or life-limiting condition and following the child and family’s unique care journey. The pathway is guided by standards based, at each stage of the journey. The document puts children and families at the centre of a planning process, with the aim of delivering integrated services in response to individual needs.

Where a detailed care pathway or protocol has been devised for clinical care associated with a particular disease or condition, it can be used alongside this core pathway, therefore ensuring the inclusion of all the additional elements needed for a comprehensive multi-agency pathway.

Download the Core care pathway

Buy the Care Pathway booklet

A Standards framework for children's palliative care can also be downloaded here, setting out the key standards that form the back bone of all four of our care pathways, for easy reference. It also includes self-assessment audit tools relating to these standards, so you and your colleagues can map how your service currently performs and think about how to develop the areas where the standards may not be fully met.