Together for Short Lives
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Conference 2022

Unlocking potential:
The key to quality children’s palliative care

The Together for Short Lives national conference
7-8 September 2022 | Hilton Manchester Deansgate

Children’s palliative care has come of age; 2022 will mark 40 years since the birth of our specialty. But, in many ways we are still in our adolescence, with much to learn and a mountain to climb to ensure every family gets the care and support they need.

The children’s palliative care sector is home to many talented, dedicated and specialist professionals who provide vital care, in the NHS, in the community, and services delivered by social care and children’s hospice charities.

But these professionals and services face a number of challenges:

  • Demand for children’s palliative care is growing – we know that the number of seriously ill babies, children and young people has trebled in the last twenty years – and is set to increase further.
  • The highest prevalence is in the most socially and economically deprived groups of the population, as well as babies, young people approaching transition, and those from BAME backgrounds.
  • More children are living longer with complex conditions that require specialist round the clock care.
  • The changing political landscape and current workforce shortages, mean services and funding are more stretched than ever.
  • Opportunities to share and learn from each other are often limited.

The potential:

The good news is that our sector is constantly finding new ways to care for children and families, and we have a strong track record of adapting to change. The pandemic was a huge challenge, but our collective response has unlocked many innovative approaches for children’s palliative care. There is a lot we can learn from one another, with a huge amount of new practice, teaching and learning initiatives, research and service developments to share.

Over two busy days, the event will focus on unlocking barriers to support, celebrating and sharing best practice, and exploring how we can reach equity in children’s palliative care. Opportunities for networking, discussion and sharing practice will be at the heart of our conference – we want to open up conversations and offer practical sessions on the key topics of interest.

Conference programme content will be streamed across plenary, workshop and abstract sessions for everyone working with babies, children and young people with complex and life-limiting conditions.

Who is our conference for?

The conference will be of particular interest to:

  • Professionals and leaders across statutory, voluntary, and academic sectors.
  • Children’s palliative care decision-makers, including CEOs, commissioners, leaders of care.
  • Practitioners working across all sectors where children with complex care and palliative care needs are cared for.
  • Professionals working in neonatal care.
  • Professionals delivering care to marginalized groups of children and families.
  • Professionals delivering care to young adults requiring complex care.
  • Student nurses, doctors, and allied health professionals with an interest in children palliative care.