Introduction: the role of Primary Care pediatricians in attending children with palliative needs is fundamental. The objective of the study is to understand the influence that specific units of pediatric palliative care have on the medical attention of children under the care of their Primary Care pediatricians.
Method: a cross-sectional study was carried out by sending an online survey to Primary Care pediatricians in the Spanish territory. We explored training needs and the desire of participants to be involved in palliative care.
Results: 202 responses were collected. 68% of participants had never received specific training in pediatric palliative care. In areas where pediatric palliative care resources exist, professionals showed a greater inclination toward participating in the activities of this discipline (mean 4.37 vs. 3.89, p = 0.104) and have had more opportunities to receive training on the subject (p = 0.007, OR: 2.18; CI 95: 1.24-3.84). If a pediatric palliative care unit was available by telephone 24 hours a day, the average number of potential activities they would participate in was much higher (p <0.001) (difference in means 4.28; CI 95: 3.92-4.65).
Conclusions: the existence of specific resources for pediatric palliative care with 24-hours telephone availability has a positive impact on the disposition of Primary Care pediatricians in participating in the treatment plans of patients with palliative care needs. In order to implement palliative care in this area, training programs must be strengthened.
Keywords: Surveys and questionnaires. Capacitación profesional. Pediatricians. Palliative care.