End of life (EOL) care is an emerging concept in Perinatology and has increasingly come into focus in Singapore as in many developed nations where babies born at the limits of viability, those with genetic conditions or potentially lethal malformations are surviving and where death may or may not be imminent but inevitable.

Clinicians and the wider care teams were encountering difficulties at their respective workplaces with decision making decisions around such scenarios and it was agreed that some training and education in emerging concepts around EOL care in Perinatology would be useful to ‘sow the seeds ‘of learning in our community and for people to become more embracing on palliation as a viable & acceptable option.

Lien Centre for Palliative Care (LCPC) was approached and agreed to support this initiative and a workgroup headed by Senior Neonatologist, Prof Roy Joseph from National University Hospital and chair of the National Ethics Committee and comprising of representatives from the 3 restructured NICUs and Star Pals was convened.

The group over a 12 month period has finalized a guideline entitled, GUIDANCE ON SUPPORTIVE AND COMFORT CARE IN VULNERABLE BABIES. This document has been endorsed by The College of Paediatrics & Child Health, Singapore, The Perinatal Society of Singapore and Chapter of Neonatologists.

The guidance is divided into 2 sections. Section I describes the complex needs of vulnerable babies and the scope which supportive and comfort care covers. Section II is targeted at healthcare professionals managing vulnerable babies, with the goal of equipping them the knowledge and skills required to provide supportive and comfort care.

To view the guidance, Click Here.


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