COLORADO SPRINGS — Palliative care can be broadly described as an all inclusive team approach for someone with a severe chronic life limiting or life threatening diagnosis.
When a family gets a diagnosis along those lines that involve a child it can be very challenging says Dr. Brooke Geyer, a pediatrician and lead physician of the Pathways Program at Pikes Peak Hospice and Palliative Care in Colorado Springs.
“In kids we’re talking about about anything from a congenital problem or genetic problem that the child is born with, all the way to a severe accident of some sort, like a traumatic brain injury, or a cancer diagnosis, even a heart problem diagnosis.”
Dr. Geyer explains palliative care can help families in these difficult situations in very impactful ways.
“Being able to provide care at home for their kids who a lot of times have a lot of special needs. There can be special equipment involved that requires training or extra nursing help. Another thing (palliative care) it helps with is navigating the healthcare system. Helping families get the services they need and helping them be able to go to all of the specialty appointments that they have to get to.”
Dr. Geyer says, a good first step after a life changing diagnosis would be asking your doctor about palliative care and if it would be a good fit for the diagnosis and situation. It’s also important to try to not get overwhelmed.
“I think the most important thing is to take it one day, and one problem at a time. You will get overwhelmed if you try to suddenly address every little thing that is happening with your child. So take it slowly picking one piece at a time to work on and just go day to day.”
To learn more about palliative care in southern Colorado, you can call the folks at Pikes Peak Hospice and Palliative Care at 719-633-3400 or visit there website by clicking HERE.
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