Optimizing the quality of medical care at the end of life has achieved national status as an important health care goal. Palliative care, a comprehensive approach to treating the physical, psychosocial, and spiritual needs of patients facing life-limiting illnesses and their families, requires the coordinated efforts of a multidisciplinary group of caregivers. Understanding the basic principles of palliative care can aid emergency department staff in identifying patients who could benefit from palliative care services and in managing the challenging situations that arise when such patients present to the hospital. In this article, we present the overall philosophy of pediatric palliative care, describe key elements of quality palliative care, and identify additional referral sources readers can access for more information.
- palliative care
- pediatric critical care
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Emergency Medicine