Paediatric Palliative Care

Formed in 2010 as a partnership between PCMCH and the Pediatric Oncology Group of Ontario (POGO), the Provincial Paediatric Palliative Care Steering Committee (PPPC-SC) supports the development and implementation of a provincial approach to the delivery of paediatric palliative care. The PPPC-SC includes representation from clinicians, administrators, family advisors, professional associations and community organizations across Ontario.

The PPPC-SC has advanced a number of priorities related to paediatric palliative care in Ontario, including: supporting the development of a hub-and-spoke model for paediatric palliative care delivery to enable timely and appropriate care; establishing data elements to help track care provided to children who receive specialized paediatric palliative care services and to support ongoing policy development efforts; and collaborating with the Ontario Palliative Care Network (OPCN) to develop the Ontario Provincial Framework for Palliative Care, which was released in 2021 in response to the passing of the Compassionate Care Act. The PPPC-SC has also been a strong advocate and champion for patient- and family-centred care.

Pediatric Palliative Care Supportive Care Expert Opinion Guidance Documents (2023 Update)

The impending death of a child is a tragedy and requires thoughtful and precise care of the entire family. To provide guidance and information to healthcare providers, including physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, pharmacists, and others caring for children and their families at or near end-of-life, a set of documents have been developed by the PPPC-SC’s End-of-Life Symptom Management Guide and End-of-Life Care Fact Sheet Working Group.

  • Approaching the End-of-Life: Pediatric Palliative Care Information for Healthcare Providers

This document is designed to provide guidance to healthcare providers on approaching the expected death of a child. This includes revisiting existing therapies; anticipation, prevention, and treatment of common issues and symptoms; and, coaching families and caregivers through the expected changes and experiences that may occur as the body gradually shuts down.

  • Symptom Management for Children Near/At End-of-Life

Symptom management for pediatric palliative care patients at the end-of-life requires an astute care team that is aligned to the status of the child as well as the goals of care of the child and family. The management strategies and medications included in this document are listed according to symptom and may be used for specific indications in pediatric patients approaching end-of-life. When no suggested dosing interval is provided, the decision to provide a medication regularly or “as needed” is up to the discretion of the treating team. Furthermore, goals of care should be discussed and kept in mind prior to initiating therapies.

The documents are available here, on the POGO website.