Partners in Care: Together for Kids
Topic Area: Access to Health Care/Insurance,
NPMs: NPM 11: Medical Home NPM 15: Adequate Insurance
Due to advances in technology and early screening, children with life-limiting conditions are living longer and often times are not receiving comprehensive health care to meet their physical and emotional needs. In July 2005, Florida’s Partners in Care: Together for Kids (PIC:TFK) program for children with life-limiting illnesses was created. Prior to the establishment of the PIC:TFK program, children with life-limiting illnesses received hospice care under the Medicare model. Because the life span of a child with a life-limiting illness is difficult to predict and the specific factors associated with childhood illnesses may require treatment up to the time of death, the Medicare model of hospice care is inappropriate for a pediatric population. PIC:TFK is the first publicly-financed health program for children in the nation that utilizes a pediatric palliative care model which integrates palliative with curative or life-prolonging therapies. PIC:TFK is based on the Children’s Hospice International Program for All-Inclusive Care for Children and their Families national model of pediatric palliative care which strives to provide a “continuum of care for children and families from the time that a child is diagnosed with a life-threatening condition, with hope for a cure, through the bereavement process, if cure is not attained”. The Florida Department of Health’s Children’s Medical Service Network (CMSN) has partnered with the Agency for Health Care Administration and Florida Hospices and Palliative Care to develop and implement this pediatric palliative care program.
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