Children’s Hospitals Gets $1.6 Million Grant
Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota announced Thursday that it has been awarded a five-year $1.6 million grant by the National Institutes of Health's Cancer Education Grants Program.
Children's will use the funds to develop a training program to improve access to, and quality of, pediatric palliative care for children with advanced cancer and other life-threatening conditions.
Palliative care is specialized care that is focused on reducing pain, symptoms, and stress caused by serious illnesses.
The program will bring together experts in the field of pediatric palliative care, hematology, and oncology from Children's, Northwestern University, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Children's Hospital Boston.
The group will develop an educational training curriculum for physicians and nurse practitioners to help them bring comprehensive pediatric palliative care programs to their own facilities.
“There is a great need across the country for better understanding about pediatric pain and palliative care,” Stefan Friedrichsdorf, medical director of Children's pain and palliative care program, said in a statement. “No child should ever suffer needlessly. We owe it to our patients and their families to provide the best care for every situation. This grant will allow us to bring our expertise to other facilities to help more children and families.”
Children's claims to have one of the largest pediatric pain and palliative care programs in North America, providing care for children at home, in the hospital, and in clinics. The pain and palliative care program uses a combination of state-of-the-art pharmacology, physical therapy, and integrative therapies such as massage, hypnosis, and acupuncture.
Both the Minneapolis and St. Paul Children's Hospitals campuses are among Minnesota's largest hospitals based on available beds. Children's employed 4,336 people-the equivalent of about 3,120 full-time workers-in 2009, the most recent data available.
Last month, Children's announced that it intends to eliminate between 200 and 250 jobs by mid-November.
Children's bills itself as the seventh-largest pediatric health care organization in the country. It serves patients through more than 14,000 inpatient visits annually, as well as 200,000 additional emergency room and outpatient visits.