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It can be scary and confusing to think about the future when your child is very sick. Even as you try to cope with these feelings, you may need to make important decisions about your child's care. Advance care planning may help you feel more prepared.
Advance care planning is conversations and plans made with your child's doctor about your child's future treatment and care. This planning is helpful if you'll face hard decisions or aren't sure what might happen.
You may also hear your child's plan called an advance directive or a living will.
Advance care planning is a process that happens over time. Plans can be changed anytime you like. Your older child or teenager can join these talks if you feel they are ready.
Advance care planning helps you:
You can also consider how much medical support you want your child to have at certain moments of care.
Making advance care plans for a child who is very sick doesn't mean that you're giving up on your child. These plans help the doctor understand what's most important to your family as you care for your child as a team. And it helps you give your child the best possible quality of life.
Good communication with your doctor is important when making advance care plans for a child who is very sick. These talks help you learn about treatment and care options. And they help guide your child's future treatment, comfort, and care. Use these ideas to help with your planning.
Share your goals, values, fears, and preferences for your child's treatment and comfort.
You may want to know things like:
They can even attend meetings to listen or take notes if you'd like.
Some hospitals have team members that can help you talk and find common ground.
Current as of:
May 2, 2022
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: John Pope MD - PediatricsLesley Ryan MD - Family Medicine
Current as of: May 2, 2022
John Pope MD - Pediatrics & Lesley Ryan MD - Family Medicine
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