Palliative Care Frequently Asked Questions

Read frequently asked questions and answers about Palliative Care services.

How do I know if palliative care is right for my child right now?

Palliative care may be right for your child if he or she suffers from a chronic, complex, and/or potentially life-limiting condition that may be accompanied by one or more of the following issues:

  • Burdensome symptoms (i.e. pain, nausea, vomiting, seizures, etc.)
  • Burdensome treatments
  • More frequent hospitalizations
  • Requiring assistance with care coordination because a complex condition is causing fragmented care and/or challenges with communication between multiple healthcare providers

If you’re unsure about whether or not your child could benefit from palliative care services, please reach out to us. We would be happy to talk with you and together decide what’s best for your child and family. 

Will the palliative care team replace my child's current care team?

No. We encourage all of your child’s care providers to continue their support for your child and family. Our Palliative Care team will work with your child’s primary team to coordinate care, always respecting your family’s wishes. Consider our team to be an added layer of support.

How do I get the palliative care team for my child when he or she is hospitalized?

Please ask your inpatient team to place a consult for the “Advanced Illness Management Team” or “AIM Team”. We will gladly come to your child’s hospital room, meet you and your child, and begin to craft an individualized care plan that best suits your families’ values and goals of care in partnership with your primary team.

How do I get palliative care for my child if he or she is not currently hospitalized?

If you are seeking palliative care in the home, please click here for more information about whether home-based palliative care is available in your area and for more information about the referral process.

What age is appropriate for palliative care?

Our teams are trained to work with infants, children, adolescents, and young adults, taking into consideration every patient’s unique developmental needs. Thus, any patient with a chronic and/or life-limiting condition being served by Nationwide Children’s Hospital is eligible for a palliative care consultation. We will develop a care plan specific to your child’s age and needs.

What diagnoses make my child eligible for palliative care?

There is not a defined list for eligibility. We seek to work with any child and family facing a life-threatening or potentially life-limiting condition. If you think we can be helpful, please seek us out and we can decide together if your child could currently benefit from palliative care.