Together for Short Lives
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Better quality care

Boy with Dad

We want to improve the quality of children’s palliative care so families have the best support and care possible.

Across the country there is a lack of consistency in the amount and quality of palliative care that children and families receive. There are not enough trained doctors, nurses and health and care professionals to provide care, and children’s palliative care is poorly understood among the wider health and care workforce.

This means that many families are referred to children’s palliative care too late or not at all and don’t benefit from services that could help them. There is also more pressure on specialist sector professionals to meet the needs of children and families, and services don’t have sufficient workforce to meet increasingly complex needs.

“I rely on my two daughters to help me with a lot of Mikey’s care. They should be able to live a normal life and not constantly worry that Mikey is going to be OK."

Chevonne, Mum of Mikey who has a life-limiting condition

How we will make a difference

We will improve the quality of children’s palliative care by:

  • Training and educating generalist professionals in children’s palliative care.
  • Lobbying Health Education England and others to train more doctors and nurses.
  • We will encourage more nurses and professionals into a career in children’s palliative care.
  • Setting quality benchmarks and supporting services to develop.
  • Leading consultation and review on which children and young people need palliative care.
  • Identifying and sharing good practice and new models of care.
  • Providing data and information to support service development.

Our 10 year quality goals

Over the next 10 years we have set the following goals to increase access to children’s palliative care services:

  1. Services have the workforce to deliver with fewer vacancies.
  2. Children’s palliative care embedded in nursing programmes.
  3. More generalist professionals trained in children’s palliative care.
  4. Quality benchmarks and common definitions in place and being met.