MP calls for correct support for sick children

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FYLDE MP Mark Menzies has given his backing to children in Fylde with life-threatening and life-limiting conditions.

The Member of Parliament this week attended an event at the Palace of Westminster organised by the charity Together for Short Lives.

Mr Menzies met with Anna Gill OBE, co-chairman of the National Network of Parent Carer Forums who herself has a child with a life-limiting condition, in addition to other representatives from the children’s palliative care sector.

He learnt about the important work done in communities across the UK – including at children’s hospices such as Brian House in Blackpool.

Staff can provide an important lifeline to children and families from the moment a child is diagnosed until their eventual death, and continue supporting loved ones for as long as they need afterwards.

But there are concerns a lack of working together by some services and badly planned transitions from children’s to adult’s care could make life harder for the children and their families.

Mr Menzies said: “It is vital health staff and social carers work together to ensure comprehensive, person-centred services are provided to children and young people who need palliative care.

“This group of young people often have very complex needs and little time to wait for the right services to be put in place. Their parents and carers are also hard-pressed and have many demands on their time, yet can have to spend hours chasing different local agencies to ensure their child receives the appropriate care.

“The NHS, local authorities and other agencies must work together to jointly assess and plan care for children and young people. It is also vital that local children’s palliative care services – including Brian House hospice – are funded fairly and sustainably by the NHS and local authorities to ensure the excellent care they provide can continue.”

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