Pediatric Palliative Care
The Pediatric Palliative Care Program was created to enhance the quality of life for children with life-limiting illness and their families by providing supportive services. To qualify for the program, the child must be 18 years old or younger, a resident of Massachusetts, and a physician must certify that the child has been diagnosed with a life-limiting condition.
Life-limiting illnesses are those illnesses that would limit the normal life expectancy of the child. Examples would include:
- Cystic fibrosis
- Severe cerebral palsy
- Major organ failures
- Progressive cancers
- Progressive genetic, neurological, or metabolic disorders.
Unlike hospice care, there is no requirement for a six-month prognosis, and the children may continue with curative treatments.
Services range from simple to complex. dependent upon the individual needs. Services may include:
- Pain and symptom management
- Case management
- Social services
- Volunteer support
- Respite care.
There are no fees; services are provided at no cost to eligible children and their families.
Pediatric Palliative Care is a program of supportive services for Massachusetts children with life-limiting illnesses and their families. Championed by the Hospice & Palliative Care Federation of Massachusetts and administered by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, the program was established and funded as part of the Commonwealth's 2006 Health Care Reform Legislation and began operation in January 2007.
For more information or to make a referral, please call 800-249-8298