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Strengthening choice in children’s palliative care

Collage of children

Children’s palliative care is essential for children who have life-limiting conditions. Without it, seriously ill children, and their families, can experience avoidable pain, stress and anxiety. The government recognises this reality and has made an end of life commitment which describes the care that children should receive – but this commitment is in danger of being missed. These children don’t have time to waste – we need the government to fulfil its commitment and help children and families make the most of every minute.

What is the problem?

A cross-party group of MPs and Lords has examined how well the government is meeting its end of life care choice commitment to babies, children and young people in England with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions. The commitment outlines six ways the government aims to support people approaching the end of their lives – but the reality is that the quality of palliative care children and families can access is patchy and depends on where in England they live.

It is unfair and represents a wholly unjustified health inequality. You can read more about the work here:

End of life care: strengthening choice

What is Together for Short Lives doing about it?

We have been working with the public and MPs to make sure the government is tackling these issues. This September we presented a petition to 10 Downing Street calling for increased funding and a national strategy for children’s palliative care, and we have asked the chancellor to include this in the upcoming budget. We will continue to push MPs and policy makers to fight for families and ensure that good quality palliative care is available across the country for all children, but we need your help.

Get involved

We need your help to fight for families. We need to encourage ministers to put the APPG’s recommendations into action, and one way we can do this is through MPs.

Please contact your MP today and ask them write to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care and ask questions in parliament. Use the links below to find a template of what you could say to your MP, and find your local MP’s contact details. You can then contact them directly, or use the form below to send an email.

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Email your local MP

  • Once you click Submit, a copy of your email will be sent to you, your MP and Together for Short Lives.