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The Role of Resilience in the Sibling Experience of Pediatric Palliative Care: What Is the Theory and Evidence?

Journal title
Children (Basel, Switzerland)
Publication year
Chin, W. L.; Jaaniste, T.; Trethewie, S.

Siblings of children with life limiting conditions (LLC) are an important part of the broader family system and require consideration in the holistic care of the family. There can be considerable variation in the functioning and adjustment of these siblings. The current paper explores the resilience paradigm, particularly in the context of siblings of children with LLC and serious medical conditions. The potential impact of children living with a seriously ill brother or sister will be overviewed, and a range of functional outcomes considered. Factors contributing to sibling resilience are detailed, including individual, family, and broader external and social factors. Given the limited research with siblings of children with LLC, literature has also been drawn from the siblings of children with serious and/or chronic medical conditions. Implications for clinical practice and future research are considered. Pediatric palliative care services may be well placed to contribute to this body of research as they have commonly extended relationships with the families of children with LLC, which span across the child’s disease trajectory.

Research abstracts