Dr Stefan Friedrichsdorf speaks to Jade Parker, Commissioning Editor: Stefan J Friedrichsdorf, MD, is medical director of the Department of Pain Medicine, Palliative Care and Integrative Medicine at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, Minneapolis/St Paul, MN, USA, home to one of the largest and most comprehensive programs of its kind in the country. The interdisciplinary pain team is devoted to prevent and treat acute, procedural, neuropathic, psycho-social-spiritual, visceral, and chronic/complex pain for all inpatients and outpatients in close collaboration with all pediatric subspecialties at Children’s Minnesota. The palliative care team also provides holistic care for pediatric patients with life-threatening diseases and adds an extra layer of support to the care of children with serious illness and their families. Integrative medicine provides and teaches integrative (‘non-pharmacological’) therapies, such as massage, acupuncture/acupressure, biofeedback, aromatherapy and self-hypnosis, to provide care that promotes optimal health and supports the highest level of functioning in all individual children’s activities. Children’s Minnesota became the first children’s hospital to system-wide implement a “Children’s Comfort Promise: We promise to do everything to prevent and treat pain,” resulting in decrease or elimination of needle pain caused by vaccinations, blood draws, intravenous access, and injections in more than 200,000 children annually.
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