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The Family Institute for Pediatric Diseases (FIPD) is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing highly specialized psychiatric counseling and mental health support services to parents whose children suffer from catastrophic or terminal diseases - and to help these families through the painful recovery process of dealing with - and potentially losing - a sick child.
Each year, hundreds of thousands of children across the country are diagnosed with life-threatening medical conditions. Cancer, cardiovascular disease, blood disorders, muscular dystrophy, AIDS, and severe brain disorders are among the hundreds of critical illnesses that strike children - and their families - every day. These diseases do not discriminate - race, age, gender, and religion are irrelevant. Without exception, parents, siblings, and other family members are not equipped to deal with these devastating realities. There is simply no greater pain for a parent than losing - or potentially losing - a sick child. When a young child is diagnosed with a catastrophic illness, it ripples through the entire family significantly impacting parents and siblings alike. The Family Institute for Pediatric Diseases was founded to provide a solution to this need and respond to the enormous void that exists within the medical community in assisting families through the complex array of emotional issues that impact parents of critically sick children each year. Parents facing the possible loss of a child are confronted with a highly unique set of mental and emotional issues that requires extremely responsive management and specialization. While hospitals typically provide social workers and occasional counseling programs, no dedicated, singularly focused channel exists on the national level that is both extremely visible and readily available for parents to reach out to so they may deal with these issues. In essence, FIPD's goal is to provide a "lifeline" to families that will allow them to deal with the otherwise unthinkable issues before them. Programs and Services FIPD will be comprised of a nationwide network of psychologists, psychiatrists, child psychologists, social workers and volunteers - and will work in partnership with hospitals, children's hospitals and charities such as Ronald McDonald House and the Make A Wish Foundation to deliver these services into the community. The objective of these programs is to offer timely, specialized counseling directly at the point of need: when the diagnosis of a catastrophic disease is rendered or at the point of severe medical intervention.
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