Huge progress for children’s palliative care in Norway: What next?

Natasha Pedersen, CEO and Founder, Ja til lindrende enhet og omsorg for barn (‘Yes to palliative units and care for children’), Norway

Natasha Pedersen. Photograph: © Stein J Bjørge, Aftenposten

Natasha Pedersen. Photograph: © Stein J Bjørge, Aftenposten

‘Yes to palliative units and care for children’, a non-profit organisation in Norway, has done important advocacy work to promote children’s palliative care during the past four years. And finally the hard work seems to have made a huge difference. In 2009, the term ‘palliative care for children’ had not been on anyone’s agenda in Norway. It wasn’t even thought of. It was an unspoken theme and no one seemed to understand anything about it. However, a combination of strategic planning, lobbying political parties and spreading information about children’s palliative care, to both the health system and the public, has finally succeeded in getting children’s palliative care on the political agenda.

Prime minister, Erna Solberg, (left) joined Natasha Pedersen, CEO for ‘Yes to palliative units and care for children’, on a walk this summer to learn more about the organisation and children’s palliative care

Prime minister, Erna Solberg, (left) joined Natasha Pedersen, CEO for ‘Yes to palliative units and care for children’, on a walk this summer to learn more about the organisation and children’s palliative care

A new government
King Harald V of Norway appointed Erna Solberg’s government on 16 October 2013. The new government represents the Conservative Party and the Progress Party. The new government has made a political platform for the next four years called the ‘Sundvolden-plattformen’. In their 75-page statement there is one sentence that states the need for education and increased knowledge about children’s palliative care and hospice care!  The national guidelines on children’s palliative care are in progress and will be finished next year. But there is a lot more to be done. Education and strategic planning for what, how and when, still needs to be on the agenda, both politically and financially.

The Minister of Health and Care Services receives a copy of ‘Touching rainbows’ at the first conference in Kristiansand on children’s palliative care in April 2012

The Minister of Health and Care Services receives a copy of ‘Touching rainbows’ at the first conference in Kristiansand on children’s palliative care in April 2012

Bent Høie (Conservative) was appointed as the Minister of Health and Care Services. Many of our colleagues from ICPCN (International Children’s Palliative Care Network) and the UK’s Together for Short Lives met him when ‘Yes to palliative units and care for children’ held their first conference on children’s palliative care in Norway in 2012. He was the one who opened this conference where more than 200 healthcare professionals attended. The new Minister of Health, together with many other new ministers, has shown a huge interest in children’s palliative care.

A new beginning
‘Yes to palliative units and care for children’ will have an important and central role for the future of  children’s palliative care in Norway, to ensure professionalism, quality and service and that children and their families receive the best care they deserve, delivered by trained health professionals.

It has been a hard journey, but now the real work begins and we need all the help we can get to ensure the future of children’s palliative care in Norway.

Find out more…

This entry was posted in ADVOCACY & POLICY, NATIONAL & INTERNATIONAL REPORTS and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Huge progress for children’s palliative care in Norway: What next?

  1. Dear Doctor Natasha Pedersen,
    as a comment to Your Article I want to write what I have written on the occasion of the World Hospice and PalliativeCare Day, last Saturday 12th October 2013: In Memory of Giampaolo Magnani born on 5th March 2009 died on the 17October 2010 Children need to be cared, cradled and loved in Caring, because it’s only owing to our There-Being, the way of our approaching, speaking to, listening to, feeling, thinking, signing, gesturing, silencing that the PharmacologicalCare is helped in order to operate with benefits within the Child-in-Pain. The Child’s precious-and-private world needs the uniqueness of our ‘Knowledge, Skill and Behaviour’ (Sheila Payne, 2013) and the Child receives-and-perceives all that as new Atmospheres created just for him, before him, and inside him. A PreverbalChild in Pain is closed within his suffering. How can the Caregiver listen to his neversaid words, his neversaid pain, his always listened cry? Love within our thoughts, our words and actions to him becomes new Space-and-Time inside his precious-and-private world. This is my best practice at the bedside of PreverbalChildren in Pain, in the field of the Non-PharmacologicalCare.

    Luisella Magnani http://www.luisellamagnani.it

  2. Pingback: Huge progress for children’s palliative care in Norway: What next? | EAPC Blog | All Things Palliative - Article Feed

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