Despite improvements in survival rates, cancer remains the leading cause of disease-related death in childhood. Research indicates significant symptom burden and suffering among children who die of cancer, as well as barriers to the provision of pediatric palliative care. In these cases, communication and decision making are vitally important to families and healthcare providers when a child cannot be cured. Novel approaches to working with families regarding advanced directives and decision-making are highlighted.
This presentation provided an overview of some of the challenges experienced by healthcare providers and families of children near the end of life.
Cynthia A. Gerhardt, PhD
Director, Center for Biobehavioral Health, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital,
Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Psychology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH