Multidisciplinary Certificate in Pediatric Palliative Care
The Multidisciplinary Certificate in Pediatric Palliative Care is a comprehensive, self-paced online program that delivers in-depth knowledge, skills, and strategies for social workers, chaplains, and others working in pediatric settings or in hospice and palliative care who want to care effectively for young patients with serious or terminal illness, and their families.
Serious or life-limiting illness in an infant, child, teen, or young adult can be devastating for the patient, family, and caregivers. In many cases, curative or life-extending treatment can last for years, along with the need for high-quality palliative care designed to offer support and ease suffering through every stage of illness.
This comprehensive self-paced certificate program focuses on topics and domains of palliative care that are particularly challenging when working with pediatric populations with serious or terminal illness and their families, including communication, easing suffering, team support, and ethical issues. Courses build upon each other to reinforce learning and retention.
Have a team to train? We offer group specials and discounts.
Delivered through an interactive learning management system that reinforces understanding and retention, this curriculum features 37.5 CE hours focusing on psychosocial domains of care for young patients with serious illness and their families.
Introduction to Pediatric Palliative Care
This course provides a brief overview of how to approach pediatric palliative care. Topics include acknowledging and recognizing personal biases and fears about caring for seriously ill children, teens, or young adults; how to develop broader self-awareness and cultural humility, which are key to engaging diverse families; common concerns about using medications in children; and how to understand a child’s external support systems.
Communication Skills for Pediatric Patients and Family Support
Communicating with seriously ill pediatric patients and their families requires special skills. This course examines how to apply active listening techniques and read nonverbal communication cues in children, teens, and young adults; how to elicit information from family members and children while respecting differences in culture and belief systems; how to support families in distress; and how to use the SPIKES communication protocol.
This course prepares community-based palliative care providers for a successful home visit with young patients and their families. It covers how to determine the right time for the visit and who should be present; how to help care for other children who may be present; how to establish trust and effectively communicate with seriously ill children, teens, and young adults; how to interact with other siblings; and how to have difficult conversations with parents.
Some of the most challenging aspects of communication in pediatric palliative care are examined in this course, including how families make decisions; how the developmental stage of a child impacts decision making; what happens when families disagree; navigating the “conspiracy of silence”; how to identify and support complex families; how to deal with conflict; and moral issues. Conflict with insurance payers and other providers is also included.
Concepts in Easing Suffering and Promoting Healing for Pediatric Patients
This course offers an overview of how best to support the emotional and spiritual needs of pediatric patients approaching end of life and their families. Modules cover grief and bereavement support for family and caregivers; support for siblings; and practices to ease suffering, including legacy-making and creating keepsakes.
This course prepares you to be present and acknowledge suffering; recognize types of suffering; assess anticipatory grief; support parents in talking with their children; assess spiritual suffering; support families with conflicting beliefs; find purpose and create meaning; empower parents and families for quality-of-life decisions; and provide bereavement support.
This course explores challenging areas of pediatric palliative care practice including working within the context of ongoing suffering (e.g., transference and countertransference); reconciling differences of opinion in families; and supporting the unique needs of stepparents, LGBTQ parents, single parents, foster parents, grandparents, and grandparents in a parenting role; and more.
Pediatric Team Support
This course discusses how caring for pediatric patients can change the dynamics of a palliative care team, and how to protect the health, well-being, and effectiveness of the team. Topics covered include the importance of the transdisciplinary approach; the need to nurture the team and promote self-care; how to identify signs of compassion fatigue; and more.
Pediatric Ethical Principles and Challenges
This course explores ethical principles and common concerns providers may encounter in pediatric hospice and palliative care including withholding food and withdrawing medication; palliative sedation; autonomy of a child; requests for non-beneficial treatment; and requests for expedited dying by patients or parents.
This in-depth curriculum was developed by expert clinicians in pediatric palliative care from leading children’s hospitals and hospice programs, with support from:
- Children’s Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition/Coalition for Compassionate Care of California
- Providence TrinityCare Hospice and Trinity KidsCare
Kimberly Bower, MD, FAAHPM, HMDC, former Chief of Palliative Medicine at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego and current Medical Director of Blue Shield of California Promise Plan
Joan “Jody” Ramer Chrastek, RN, DNP, FPCN, the PACCT (Pediatric Advanced Complex Care Team) coordinator for Fairview Home Care and Hospice, Minneapolis, MN
Michelle Goldbach, CNP, MHA, RN, CHPN, Director of Palliative Care and Pediatrics at Elizabeth Hospice in San Diego County, CA
Denise Hess, MA, MDiv, Chaplain at Providence St. Joseph Health and Executive Director of the Supportive Care Coalition
Glen Komatsu, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Providence TrinityCare Hospice and Regional Palliative Care
Debra Lotstein, MD, MPH, Director of the Division of Comfort and Palliative Care at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
Susan Montgomery, RN, BSN, MA, a medical writer whose clinical career as a registered nurse included caring for children and adults in both critical care and hospice. She is the former Director of Interdisciplinary Practice at Suncoast Hospice
Therese Trebaol, DBioethics, clinical ethics consultation specialist; creator and manager of the palliative care program at Good Samaritan Hospital, Los Angeles; past interim Director of Bioethics at Kaiser Permanente in Woodland Hills
Completion and Refunds
In order to complete this course and obtain a certificate, you must view the course in its entirety, correctly answer all case studies and quiz/test questions (as appropriate) and complete the evaluation. You will have 90 days to access this course from the date of purchase. No refunds are given for self-paced courses.
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