Article Abstract

High symptom burden in children with cancer and high parental satisfaction: why the disconnect?

Authors: Elisha Waldman, Joanne Wolfe

Abstract

Pediatric palliative care (PC) has emerged over the past two decades as an approach aiming to ease suffering for children and their families coping with life-threatening illness, and has become increasingly integrated, concurrently, with disease-directed care. There is also recognition of the need for improved PC services in low- and middle-income countries. While most innovations occurring in PC are taking place in industrialized countries, over 90% of global child cancer deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries (1). Barriers to care include delayed diagnosis, limited access to therapies, insufficient and undertrained personnel and lack of infrastructure (2). Where services do exist, financial barriers may remain a significant concern (3). Especially frustrating is that access to even relatively inexpensive and easy to use treatments, such as morphine, remains inadequate due to both concrete and conceptual barriers (2,3).