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Palliative care and resuscitation health support for children and young people

This page outlines how education staff, care services, parents, guardians, and health professionals work together to support a child or student who may need palliative care or resuscitation in education and care settings.

About palliative care and resuscitation

Palliative care aims to ease the suffering of patients and their families for people with a life-limiting or terminal illness.

Resuscitation is the actions taken to keep a person alive after their breathing and heartbeat has stopped. Quick action with cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) can sometimes be the difference between life and death. 

Health support plans and agreements

If the child or student needs palliative care or resuscitation, the education or care service should refer to health support planning for children and students in education and care settings to ensure that the appropriate plans and agreements are in place. This is in addition to the palliative care or resuscitation-specific plans and agreements listed on this page. 

Care plan 

Parents or caregivers should complete a non-specific health care plan – HSP110 (DOC 167KB) with their child’s health professional and return it to their school, preschool or care provider. 

Education and care staff who regularly engage with the child or student need to know what is in the plan.

Emergency care and first aid plan

Individual first aid plan

An individual first aid plan – HSP124 (DOC 167KB) should be completed by the treating health professional to describe clear instructions for the management of the child or young person.

Education and care staff should still provide first aid, but cannot apply the end of life order. First aid administered in education and care for a child with an end of life order may include:

A health professional may develop an individual first aid plan for end of life care – HSP391 (DOC 986KB) for a child with an end of life care resuscitation plan that indicates they are not for chest compression or breathing support. 

Training for education and care staff 

Schools, preschools and other care services must have at least one designated first aider trained in emergency first aid response available at all times.

Palliative care and resuscitation plans

The Access Assistant Program provides advice on children with palliative care and resuscitation plans. 

How parents and caregivers can help

Parents or guardians must:

  • notify the school, preschool or care service if their child requires palliative care and resuscitation
  • complete health care plans and agreements with their health care professionals and provide them to the school, preschool or care service
  • provide required medication to the school, preschool or care service.

If a medication agreement is in place, parents and caregivers must fulfil the roles and responsibilities outlined on the medication management and care page.

How health professionals can help

Health professionals support schools, preschools, care services and families by helping to develop the care plan and any supporting medication and care agreements.

Disability advice and research

Phone: 8226 0515
Email: education.health [at] sa.gov.au