Mastodon Understanding the needs of a child in pediatric palliative care ~ Pallimed

Monday, March 30, 2015

Understanding the needs of a child in pediatric palliative care

by Kevin Madden

“This child needs a tracheostomy before he can go home.”

It is a phrase I had heard – and probably had said – many times as an attending in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. This time, however, I heard a singular word – need – in a completely different way. Many thoughts went through my mind:

  • Why does a child “need” anything?
  • Who determines what a child “needs”?
  • How many times had I delivered care to a child based on what I thought the child “needed” without ever knowing whether the child and family thought they “needed” the same thing?
This singular moment began a long, transformative journey from Pediatric Intensivist to a Pediatric Palliative Care physician.

I’ve discovered an incredibly vibrant community of like-minded individuals committed to helping children and their families navigate their way through unthinkable circumstances. As Pediatric Palliative Care is a relatively new specialty, people bring skills and experiences from many different fields of expertise to the table – general pediatricians, social workers, pediatric oncologists, pediatric nurse practitioners, NICU physicians, pharmacists, PICU physicians, chaplains and on and on… To me, it is the collective collaboration that makes our work so interesting, fascinating and satisfying.

With that collective mentality in mind, I am excited to see the #pedpc community come together and continue the invaluable exchange of ideas in the Twittersphere in a #hpm Tweetchat dedicated to Pediatrics, this Wednesday April 1st at 9 p.m. EST! (Not an April Fool's joke!)

Kevin Madden, MD is a Palliative Care physician at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, TX where he specializes in Pediatric Palliative Care. In his former life he was a Pediatric Critical Care physician at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. He enjoys riding bikes, skiing, traveling and playing all sorts of sports with his family.

What: #hpm chat on Twitter
When: Wed 3/4/2015 - 9p ET/ 6p PT
Host: Kevin Madden 

If you are new to Tweetchats, you do not need a Twitter account to follow along. Try using the search function on Twitter. If you do have a Twitter account, we recommend using, for ease of following.

We will be posting the transcript and analytics here after the chat takes place. Chat Transcript and Chat Analytics courtesy of @Symplur

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