Pediatric Palliative Care Pilot Curriculum: Impact of “Pain Cards” on Resident Education

Academic Article


  • Background: Prior research has shown that less than 40% of pediatric program directors believe their graduating residents competent in palliative care. While many curricula have been developed to address this need, few have demonstrated improved comfort and/or knowledge with palliative care principles. The purpose of this study was to test a pocket card educational intervention regarding resident knowledge and comfort with palliative care principles. Methods: Pocket reference cards were created to deliver fundamentals of pediatric palliative care to resident learners; didactics and case studies emphasized principles on the cards. Self-reported comfort and objective knowledge were measured before and after the curriculum among residents. Results: Of 32 post-graduate year 2 (PGY2) residents, 23 (72%) completed the pre-test survey. The post-test was completed by 14 PGY2 residents (44%) and 16 of 39 PGY3/4 residents (41%). There was improvement in comfort with communication, as well as pain and symptom management among the residents. Knowledge of palliative care principles improved in part, with only a few survey questions reaching statistical significance. 100% of respondents recommended the cards be provided to their colleagues. Conclusion: This longitudinal curriculum, designed specifically for pediatric residents, was built into an existing training program and proved to be popular, feasible, and effective at improving comfort with basic palliative care principles.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Barnett MD; Maurer SH; Wood GJ
  • Start Page

  • 829
  • End Page

  • 833
  • Volume

  • 33
  • Issue

  • 9