Responding to Increasing admissions to paediatric intensive care units in England and Wales: more than just a rising birth rate published today in the Archives of Disease in Childhood, Dr Peter-Marc Fortune of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, said:
“This new analysis importantly highlights the growing pressure paediatric intensive care is under, putting the drop in funding growth into sharp context, and from which point demand has only increased.
“What we know at the front line of paediatric intensive care is that expectations are shifting. This is most obviously seen where decisions are being made about the balance between intensive interventions and palliation; we are increasingly treating children with complex disease more aggressively with a focus on prolonging their lives, with less certain expectations regarding their potential for improvement and quality of life. We need an open, honest, debate in society about the course we are taking; it should ask if this is the right path, has it gone far enough, or perhaps has it gone too far? Whatever the result of such a debate, appropriate resources must then follow to allow both the medical and social care to be delivered."