Improving access to children's palliative care

Children’s palliative care is life-long supportive care for children with life-limiting and life- threatening conditions. It promotes the best possible quality of life for a child and offers support for their whole family. Alongside medical care, children might experience therapeutic treatments, home visits and different types of support which extends to the whole family with parents and siblings involved throughout.

Children who are very unwell need the same things all children need, such as friendship, fun, laughter, downtime, treats and activities to help them discover the world through all five senses. Children’s palliative care allows children to enjoy being children with full, contented lives.

Children’s palliative care also provides end-of-life care and ongoing bereavement support for families when a child dies.

Research shows that there are 21 million children worldwide with conditions that would benefit from a palliative care approach, and between four and eight million who need specialist children’s palliative care. In the UK, the number of children and young people with life-limiting conditions is increasing due to more seriously ill babies surviving infancy and children and young people with complex conditions living longer.  

We are committed to improving access to palliative care for children across the UK and beyond.

Read more about some of our work in children’s palliative care.

Two small baby hands touching mum and dad's hand