ST. LOUIS - The HAP Foundation has strengthened its pediatric program by incorporating the Greater Illinois Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition (GIPPCC) and Missing Pieces resources under its operations. In an effort to support more seriously ill children and families coping with the loss of a child, The HAP Foundation has expanded its reach by encompassing these vital collaborations within the pediatric care community. The HAP Foundation, an independent nonprofit, continues to provide education, advocacy, workforce development, and research around hospice, palliative care, and grief support for children and adults.
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“The HAP Foundation will build on the Greater Illinois Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition and Missing Pieces’ groundwork and leverage relationships to sustain a place to support seriously ill children and their families following a loss,” said Joseph Matty, President of The HAP Foundation. “We commend their past leaders and their work as we look to the future.”
The Greater Illinois Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition is an active coalition of hospices, hospital systems, families, individuals, and supporting organizations that collectively strive to increase access to quality pediatric palliative care programming and bereavement support throughout the state of Illinois. As part of the HAP Foundation, it aims to optimize the quality of life for every child living with a serious illness, their families, and the teams that care for them.
Missing Pieces is a centralized hub for grief support, education, and resource navigation for families and communities impacted by a pediatric death. With more than 70 organizations, the Missing Pieces network brings expertise in child loss by illness, trauma, homicide, overdose, and suicide, serving families and children grieving perinatal through young adult deaths. Recently, the Alliance of Perinatal and Palliative Care Facilitators of Northern Illinois joined Missing Pieces to make a collective impact.
“The Peds Coalition and Missing Pieces are proud to join The HAP Foundation to make a greater impact for more children and their families,” Kristin James, Executive Director of Pediatrics at The HAP Foundation, former Executive Director of Greater Illinois Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition, and co-founder of Missing Pieces. “Our visions are in alignment, and we are excited for the future of pediatric hospice, palliative care and grief support.”
“Through this expansive effort, we hope to help people find the resources they need as they experience the tragedy of an infant, child, adolescent, or young adult death. This means helping families and communities find educational and supportive resources. It also means helping health care providers by developing networking and professional development opportunities,” said Dr. Kelly Michelson, attending physician at Lurie’s Children's Hospital, Professor of Pediatrics and Julia and David Uihlein Professor of Bioethics and Medical Humanities at Northwestern University, and co-founder of Missing Pieces.