SOURCE: NHPCO

November 29, 2007 08:47 ET

Partnering for Children: A New Campaign to Raise Awareness and Funds to Support Children With Life-Threatening Conditions

Melissa Gilbert Launches National Campaign

NEW ORLEANS, LA--(Marketwire - November 29, 2007) - Partnering for Children, a national awareness campaign to help get the word out about compassionate, family-centered healthcare for children with life-threatening conditions, was announced on Thursday, November 29. The campaign is sponsored by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, Children's Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition, and the National Hospice Foundation.

The announcement was made in New Orleans at the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization's (NHPCO) 8th Clinical Team Conference by NHPCO President/CEO J. Donald Schumacher and Ms. Melissa Gilbert, the director, actor, producer, and activist who currently serves as board president of the Children's Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition (CHPCC).

"Working together through our Partnering for Children campaign, we can make more people aware of the possibilities that exist to improve care and support for children and their families," said Ms. Gilbert. "It's time for all of us to recognize that we can make a profound and lasting difference by joining together to bring comfort and hope to children and families when they need it most."

Partnering for Children is reaching out to compassionate people nationwide with messages and suggested actions to raise awareness of the possibilities that exist to improve care and support for children and their families and to let families know that they are not alone on this journey.

"I am honored to partner with Children's Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition," said Dr. Schumacher. "I know that working together we can raise awareness about the importance of pediatric palliative care, which is dedicated to ensuring that seriously ill children and their families get the compassionate medical, emotional, and spiritual support they need to hold on to hope, whatever form it takes.

Ms. Gilbert, who visited yesterday with families in New Orleans, added, "In an ideal world, the words 'children' and 'hospice' would never go together, but unfortunately sometimes they do and when they do, we owe children and their families compassionate, family centered care."

Partnering for Children is focused on engaging partners in an effort to improve healthcare for children with life-threatening conditions and increase support for their families.

Activities include:

Community Engagement

Free outreach materials and engagement strategies to engage parents and healthcare providers in efforts to raise awareness about pediatric palliative care and hospice.

Resources for Parents, Siblings and Caregivers

Free online information for families and caregivers to provide support and to help them find the services they need.

Virtual Resource Library

An online catalog of educational resources that palliative care and hospice providers can use to create or enhance their care delivery to seriously ill children and their families.

National Media Campaign

Communication tools to engage members of the media, publicize outreach activities, raise funds and gain credibility.

In conclusion, Dr. Schumacher said, "It's time for each of us to recognize that we can make a profound and lasting difference by joining together to bring comfort and hope to children and families when they need it most."

Partnering for Children is a national awareness campaign to help get the word out about compassionate, family-centered healthcare for children with life-threatening conditions. The campaign is reaching out to parents, healthcare professionals, the media and funders about the benefits of palliative care and hospice. Partnering for Children is a collaborative effort between the Children's Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and the National Hospice Foundation -- and you. To learn more about Partnering for Children and how you can get involved, visit www.partneringforchildren.org.

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