EPEC Pediatrics Symposium Report – Mar 2023

“It takes a team. And you may not have a team. You may be on your own, but you are no longer on your own. This is the start, not the end. Or it’s the end of the beginning.”, says Dr Justin Baker of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital on the final day of the EPEC Pediatrics Symposium.

The EPEC Pediatrics Symposium was held from 23-25 March 2023 in Manila, Philippines. Co-organised by the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network and The Ruth Foundation, the event saw over 60 participants from 10 different regions around the world in attendance across the three days.

We were honoured to have a stellar international faculty facilitate three days’ worth of programmes for our participants:

  • Justin N. Baker, MD, Chief of the Division of Quality of Life and Palliative Care, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
  • Andrea Cuviello, MD, Divisions of Oncology and Quality of Life, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
  • Ross Drake, MD, Clinical Lead of Paediatric Palliative Care and Complex Pain Services, Starship Children’s Hospital
  • Gemma Aburn, RN, PhD, Nurse Specialist, Starship Children’s Hospital
  • Anthony Herbert, MD, Director of the Paediatric Palliative Care Service, Queensland Children’s Hospital
  • Suzanne Momber, RN, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Perth Children’s Hospital
  • Lee-Ai Chong, MD, Head of Paediatric Pain and Palliative Care Unit, University Malaya Medical Centre
  • Poh-Heng Chong, MD, Medical Director of HCA Hospice Limited

The first day of the symposium was dedicated to the Train-the-Trainer’s (TtT) programme which was aimed at professionals already experienced in providing pediatric palliative care and who wish to advance their teaching skills further.

The modules encompassed interactive lectures, opportunities to practice face-to-face teaching in small groups, learning how to facilitate role play and practicing presenting pre-planned presentations. As it was an intimate group of fewer than 20 participants, they had many opportunities to interact and consult with the faculty members.

On the second day of the symposium, a hybrid programme was organised for both the TtT and End-User participants, which was a first for EPEC!

We welcomed the start of day two with introductions from the faculty and all 63 participants.

Following were various lectures on topics such as goals of care and advance care planning, communication and planning, etc.

Selected TtT participants were also able to pair up with a faculty member to facilitate their assigned modules to the end-user participants.

Wrapping up the day was a lecture on self-care for professionals which served as a reminder to everyone present to practice self-compassion before we bid goodbye to the TtT participants.

The final day was filled with modules for the end-user participants.

The topics were comprehensive and transdisciplinary, covering issues across biomedical and psychosocial domains.

Before the closing of the symposium, the participants shared their reflections and evaluations with everyone. Many had key takeaways and made promises to bring what they have learned to their hospitals and communities.

We would like to thank all the participants for coming from all over the world to join in the symposium! We are also very grateful to the wonderful faculty members for all their hard work in preparing and facilitating the programmes. A special thank you to The Ruth Foundation for their incredible hospitality and organisation of the symposium.

Last but not least, we would like to thank St. Jude Global for their generous sponsorship to provide this precious opportunity for passionate clinicians who may be resource challenged in our midst to access training.

Missed this symposium? Come join us for our EPEC Pediatric Pre-conference Workshop at our upcoming 15th Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Conference in Incheon, Korea from 4-7 Oct 2023! For more details, visit our official conference website: http://aphc2023.kr/

Written by Ms Trudy Giam (APHN Executive )

Published on: 10 April, 2023 | Last modified: 10 April, 2023