Palliative and End of Life Care
Palliative care is an approach that aims to improve the quality of life of patients and their families facing life-threatening or life-limiting illness. Palliative care is concerned with managing the problems or symptoms that cancer can cause and providing support for the whole family at this difficult time when cure may no longer be possible.
Its aims are:
- To arrange services to meet the specific needs of your child and whole family
- To manage symptoms promptly
- To provide care where you want it (as far as possible)
- To provide your whole family with as much support as you need
A whole team of professionals is available and works together to meet these aims, some of which will already be known to you. This may include:
- Your GP
- Your hospital consultant
- Your Macmillan nurse
- Your social worker
- Local community nurses
- Doctors and nurses specialising in palliative care
- Children’s hospices
- Other significant people e.g.teachers, clergy
A key worker, usually your paediatric oncology nurse specialist, will lead the team and coordinate care.
Your key worker will
- Discuss with you the options for palliative care and the services that may be available to support you and your family in your local community.
- Develop and share plans with you about how symptoms could be managed.
- Keep in regular contact with you to review and update plans and to provide emotional and psychological support.
- Aim to respond to new symptoms as they develop working with local services so they can be addressed promptly.
- Provide practical and emotional support at the time of death and beyond
The team of Nurse Specialists in the department operate a 24 hour on call service. You will be given the contact details for this service that you can contact any time of day or night to help address any problems that your child may have and to provide support to your family.
How to contact us
You will be given the individual mobile telephone number of your allocated nurse specialist (Key Worker) along with details of how to contact our out of hours palliative care on call service.
You can also contact our office on 0113 3922323.
Links for more information
- Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG)
- Choices - When it seems there are none
- Facing the Death of your Child
- Managing Symptoms at Home
- Bereavement - Where to go for help
- One day at a time - when your child isn’t going to get better
- One day at a time - When your child dies
Together for Short Lives
Local Children’s Hospices