National Paediatric Palliative Care Action Plan

Paediatric palliative care is about improving the quality of life of infants, children and young people diagnosed with a life-limiting condition and supporting those who care for them.  

Serious illness, death, and dying at any age is difficult territory for our society. Children and young people at the end of life stirs much deeper feelings and thoughts.

Rather than shy away from those natural responses, Australia’s first ‘Paediatric Palliative Care National Action Plan’ boldly seeks to raise awareness of the issues and drive better access to palliative care for these special people in all our lives.

Launched by Assistant Minister for Health and Age Care, Ged Kearney in July 2023, the Action Plan is a roadmap that guides the way children and young people with life limiting conditions and their loved ones are supported.

Funded by the Australian Government over three years as a partnership between Palliative Care Australia and Paediatric Palliative Care Australia and New Zealand, the Action Plan draws on extensive patient and family input.

The families who took part did so as part of their children’s legacy, many seeing the experience as giving added purpose and impact to short lives.

“In sharing our stories, we are contributing to ensuring that others walking the path behind and beside us are cradled and carried through the journey safely and with care,” one parent said.

Eighteen recommendations form the backbone of the Action Plan, including measures that deal with quality, access, information sharing, collaboration, data, and research.

Building on the Action Plan project, funds for a new paediatric palliative care project were announced in the May 2023 Australian Budget.

Click HERE to download the Action Plan.

You will find a host of other advice, tools, and support for families, carers, health professionals and volunteers at the National Paediatric Palliative Care Project website.

If you would like to get involved or have questions, please get in touch with the PCA Paediatric Project Team at


Simon Waring, Action Plan Steering Committee, Ged Kearney, Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care, Camilla Rowland, CEO, Palliative Care Australia, and Michael Wasley, CEO, Very Special Kids, at the launch of the Action Plan.