Courageous Parents Network complements the important work of physicians, nurse practitioners and nurses, social workers, chaplains and allied health professionals as they support families whose child faces serious illness.
We offer providers professionally vetted and reviewed content to help:
- Start difficult conversations with a family. Learning from others in a similar situation can relieve feelings of isolation and bolster parent confidence. Sometimes the discussion in the videos or the information in a Guide brings up questions or feelings a family may not have been able to broach on their own.
- Guide parents in anticipating and navigating new and difficult terrain. Beginning with diagnosis, the family needs help finding its own way through a multitude of systems and processes. CPN encourages self-determination and decision-making, allowing the family to advocate for its values, needs and wishes, and improving communication with providers.
- Promote the benefits of pediatric palliative care. Courageous Parents seeks to debunk myths about palliative care, especially confusion with hospice, as a means to advocating for more consideration and acceptance. The site includes helpful factual information along with positive insights from parents that can support discussions of care and treatment options.
- Teaching and training colleagues, broadening and deepening our understanding of the complexities of parenting a child who is seriously ill. CPN content offers providers a rare glimpse into the family experience—an invaluable resource for self-education and also for training in clinical settings.
The CPN Provider Toolkit (in the Provider Portal) includes exercises that employ content and reflection as we seek to encourage values exploration and increase empathy.
“At the heart of the practice of palliative care is understanding the lived experience of a family whose child faces a serious illness. When we educate medical students, residents and colleagues about palliative care, the parent voices of the Courageous Parents Network teach them and reach them in ways that our traditional methods of education cannot, by giving us a privileged window into their lives. I have seen how each practitioner finds their own humanness and connection in these powerful parent stories, and can take away a different understanding that helps them become better, more compassionate, and more effective caregivers.”
—Patricia O’Malley, MD, MassGeneral Hospital for Children