A new report recommends that more children and young people with life-limiting conditions in Scotland, should have input from palliative care services.
The University of York report entitled “Children in Scotland requiring Palliative Care: identifying numbers and needs (The ChiSP Study)” was commissioned by The Managed Service Network for Children and Young People with Cancer (MSNCYPC), through Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS).
By analysing healthcare and administrative data, the report reveals rising numbers of children and young people in Scotland, who have a life-limiting condition.
Estimates of the numbers of children and young people with a life-limiting condition, and who have had an admission to hospital during that year, show an increase of 54% (4,334 to 6,661) between 2003/4 and 2013/4. The overall prevalence has also risen from 12,039 to 15,404 between 2009/10 and 2013/14.
Estimates of number of persons aged 0-25 with a life-limiting condition
It is clear that the potential demand for palliative care in the 0-25 year age group outstrips the current provision.
Children in Scotland requiring Palliative Care: identifying numbers and needs (The ChiSP Study) 
Further recommendations from the report suggest that palliative care services should be prioritised for children under 1 year of age, and for children and young people from areas of high deprivation. In addition, recommendations are made to develop both age-specific care and culturally competent care to children and young people from all ethnic groups.
In Scotland, 55% of adults (figures calculated for age over 18 years) die in a hospital whereas 5% die in a hospice  This can be contrasted with findings from the report abut young people and children, where 73% of deaths were in a hospital and 5.6% were in a hospice.
PATCH is the first charity specifically to support and identify ways to deliver 24/7 specialist end of life care for hospital patients. PATCH believes that all hospital patients should have access to specialist palliative care when they need it, regardless of their illness, and that there should be skilled staff to provide it.
PATCH is totally committed to raising the profile of end of life care in hospitals and is working with government, hospices, other charities and professional bodies to do so.
- Find out more about PATCH
- The Managed Service Network for Children and Young People with Cancer (MSNCYPC)
- Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS)
References and Footnotes
- University of York. (2015). Children in Scotland requiring Palliative Care: identifying numbers and needs (The ChiSP Study) [Accessed: 17 November 2015]. ↩
- Ramsay J, National Records of Scotland; Sharpe K, Information Statistics Division. Personal communication of data 2009–12 (2014). ↩