1. How can LauraLynn help my child and family?

    LauraLynn provides Family Support, Symptom Management, End-of-Life Care, Bereavement Support and Direct Care.

  2. What is the Admission Criteria to have my child admitted to LauraLynn?

    Please read our Admission Criteria here

    We accept referrals to us from families, medical professionals, GP’s, Public Health Nurse’s, Early Intervention Teams or School Teams. Following receipt of a referral, we will request information from those involved in your child’s care such as medical reports, social work reports and therapy reports.

    Full information can be viewed on our Admissions & Referrals here or you can download an Referral Form and or contact referrals@lauralynn.ie or phone 01 2893151

  3. Can I access the services of LauraLynn from anywhere in Ireland?

    Yes, LauraLynn is Ireland’s only Children’s Hospice and we support children and families from all 32 counties.  LauraLynn@HOME Programme provides care within Dublin Mid-Leinster and Dublin North East. For FAQ’s for Lauralynn@HOME click here.

  4. What is a short break stay?

    In the context of children’s palliative care, a short break stay is defined as: the provision of appropriately trained individuals (s) of care for children with life-limiting conditions for a specified period of time, thus providing temporary relief to the usual caregiver.’

    Short break stays can vary considerably and can be determined by a number of factors including:

    • A Child’s condition
    • Age
    • The home and family situation
    • Diagnosis and prognosis

    At LauraLynn we provide residential short breaks where your child or even the whole family can stay in our family units on site. Your child will be looked after by our professional staff who will take care of his/her medical needs as well as provide activities which will entertain and stimulate them throughout their stay. You and your immediate family  will have the opportunity to relax and spend quality time together. You will have the opportunity to take your other children on a family outing, safe in the knowledge that your child is being well cared for and you are near your precious child.

    We have recently initiated a support group  for siblings enabling them to have fun and receive support in their own right. Parents too are facilitated through our Toddler Programmes the opportunity to meet and share their experiences in an informal setting.

  5. Can I stay with my child during their short break stay?

    Yes, We have 4 self-catering family accommodation units at LauraLynn which is available for you and your family during your child’s stay.  This can be booked when you are finalising arrangements of your child’s stay with your Key Worker.

  6. Do you charge for services?

    No there is no charge.  All our services are free to families who are admitted to our LauraLynn programme.  We rely on the generous support of individual donors and corporate sponsors. Additionally, we work in partnership with the HSE to deliver our Residential Care Programme for young people with Intellectual Disabilities.

  7. Who can refer a child to LauraLynn?

    We accept referrals to us from families, medical professionals, GP’s, Public Health Nurse’s, Early Intervention Teams or School Teams.  Following receipt of a referral, we will request information from those involved in your child’s care such as medical reports, social work reports and therapy reports.

    Full information can be viewed on our Admissions & Referrals here or you can download a Referral Form here and or contact referrals@lauralynn.ie  or phone 01 289 3151

  8. What is end-of-life care?

    The end-of-life phase begins when a judgement is made that treatment is no longer an option and the child will die. However, the goal is that the child will live as well as possible and their quality of life is paramount. It focuses on preparing for death and managing the end stage of a terminal medical condition. This includes care during and around the time of death and afterwards. It enables the supportive and palliative care needs of both the child and the family to be met through support and psychological care.  It includes management of pain and other symptoms and providing psychological, social, spiritual and practical support as well as support for the family into bereavement.

    Our End-of-life Care is offered to your child in the last few days and weeks of their life.  We aim to ensure maximum physical comfort for your child and we provide psychological, social, spiritual and bereavement support for the entire family during and after the death of your child.


  9. Are there doctors at LauraLynn?

    We have a Paediatrician that is based in LauraLynn three times per week.  Medical services are supported  by a local GP practise.  Our two G.P’s are skilled in the area of medicine relating to children with complex healthcare needs and attend LauraLynn three times a week.  We also use an ‘on call’ system for out of hours. Our Paediatrician works in close consultation with the nursing team to ensure plans are in place to support children in the event of changes in their conditions. Meet our Medical Team here.

  10. What should I tell my other children?

    Many Mums and Dads worry about how they can share their child’s diagnosis with siblings. You will probably be worried about how they will react. You may want to protect them from the truth. You may not feel emotionally strong enough to say the words you need to, or worry about crying in front of your children. You may be concerned about using the right words to describe what is happening to their brother or sister. Being truthful may be difficult, but it can save a lot of pain and misunderstanding in the future. It also builds the trust between you and your children.

    You might not always know the answers to questions your children ask. But it’s ok to be honest and say you don’t know.

    When you are in touch with your nurse or GP, you could talk to them about how you can explain things to your children. You can also meet our psychologist who will support you and your other children in finding ways to deal with these challenges. We also provide sibling and toddler camps where your child and family can attend programmes which help you deal with these issues. You will find information on Our Bereavement and Our Family Support Programmes here.

  11. What do I do if we have no diagnosis for my child?

    You may not have been given a specific diagnosis for your child. Because there are so many rare and complex childhood conditions, it is not uncommon for this to happen. Even so, it can make you feel isolated and even more uncertain about your child’s future.  Even without a named diagnosis, you can still refer your child to our care service as our care provision is based on a child’s needs.

  12. What do I bring when my child is going to stay at LauraLynn?

    Prior to your child’s first admission a member of the Care Team will call you and discuss what you need to bring with you.

  13. What are the visiting hours?

    Only visitors approved by parents are permitted to visit.


  14. What kind of parking, eating and play areas do you have at LauraLynn?

    You can access full information and maps on Our Facilities here

    You can download a ‘site map’ for the various buildings here Location & Facilities Site Map Site Facilities Map

  15. How do I know my child/young adult will be protected from harm or abuse?

    LauraLynn is fully committed to safe guarding and promoting the well being of all children.  As part of our child protection policy we vet all staff, students and volunteers. We have a named Designated Liaison Person and Deputies within our hospice and residential care service to support and respond to any concerns.  All Staff and Volunteers attend training in Child Protection.

  16. What is children’s palliative care?

    Palliative care for children and young people with life-limiting conditions is a holistic and family centred approach to care. The key principles are the support of the child and family and the focus is on providing a quality of life through managing a child’s symptoms, the provision of respite care and continuing care through death and bereavement.


  17. What is the difference between children’s and adult palliative care?

    A number of children requiring palliative care have life-limiting conditions and these children may live for many years with these conditions. The child’s diagnosis is often rare and specific to childhood.  Identifying a prognosis can be challenging and the palliative phase may be longer and unpredictable. Parents and siblings will need continual resources and supports throughout the journey of their child’s illness and beyond.

    Therefore, children’s and adult’s palliative care needs are differing and distinct. 

  18. What is palliative care for adolescents? Why is it different?

    Adolescence is a time where there is often a conflict in the areas of decision making, desire for greater freedom and independence.

    The Department of Health and Children – Palliative Care For Children With Life-Limiting Conditions in Ireland- A National Policy (2009) highlighted the challenges and improvements required in providing palliative care to teenagers. The key recommendations were improved, transitioning from paediatric to adult services. The continual need for improvements in hospital facilities and opportunities for privacy and communication and interaction with adults was highlighted.

    A pivotal recommendation was further education for professionals caring for adolescents and a recognition of adolescent’s participation in decision making around their treatments and care plans.

  19. What is the difference between a life-limiting and a life-threatening disease?

    Life-limiting conditions are those for which there is no reasonable hope of cure and from which children will die. These conditions cause slow deterioration over time and the child will become increasingly dependent on parents and carers. Life-threatening conditions are those for which curative treatment may be feasible but can fail for example in cancer treatments.

  20. Helpful resources for parents?

    Below are some of the organisation which can support families with children with life-limiting conditions or you will find more organisations and information in Resources For Families here.

    Anam Cara – Tel. 01 4045378

    AMNCH, Tallaght – Tel. 01 4142896

    Carers Association – Tel. 057 9322920

    Central Remedial Clinic – Tel. 01 8057400

    Children in Hospital Ireland – Tel. 1890252682

    Citizens Information – Tel. 0761 07 4000

    CUH, Temple Street, Dublin – Tel. 01 8784344

    Dept. of Social Protection – Tel. 1890 500 0000

    Dept. of Health Publications:  Palliative Care For Children With Life-Limiting Conditions In Ireland- A National Policy                                   

    Enable Ireland – Tel. 01 2615900

    Inclusion Ireland – Tel. 01 8559891

    International Children’s Palliative Care Network

    Irish Association of Palliative Care – Tel. 01 8734735

    Jack and Jill Foundation – T:. 045 894538

    Ombudsman for Children – T:  01 865 6800

    Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin – Tel. 01 4096100

    The Irish Hospice Foundation – Tel. 01 6793188

    Together for Short Lives