Together for Short Lives
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Joining up care through managed clinical networks

Managed clinical networks (MCNs) have the potential to bring children’s palliative care professionals and services together in regions across the UK, joining up care and support for children and families. We call on the UK’s governments to invest in MCNs to make sure every one of the UK’s 49,000 children with life-limiting conditions can benefit from the integrated care and support that MCNs can help to achieve.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guideline on end of life care for infants, children and young people recommends that children’s palliative care services should be based on managed clinical networks (MCNs), which coordinate the way in which care is planned and provided in regional areas across the UK. Together for Short Lives has been integral in helping to develop regional palliative care networks; we think these could be developed into full MCNs.

We would like the UK Government and the NHS to work with us to develop MCNs, building on the established children’s palliative care networks in England. This would provide a coordinated and collaborative approach to providing children’s palliative care in each of the regional areas.

What do we know about MCNs in the UK?

Managed clinical networks help to build a strategic and joined up approach to children’s palliative care across health and social care services and bring together statutory and charitable providers. The MCN approach has already been adopted in Scotland, Wales and Yorkshire and Humber.

Policy and influencing