Known for her expertise in pediatric end-of-life care, Catherine “Cathie” Faulkner, RN, MSN joined the Regional Hospice and Palliative Care (RHPC) team earlier this year, in the role of Pediatric Clinical Manager/Liaison. In this position, she will use her breadth and depth of experience to support the RHPC population of terminally ill children and their families.
Working alongside the Regional Hospice interdisciplinary team of social workers, chaplains, home health aides and volunteers, Faulkner will serve as a critical resource for families as they navigate the complex journey of pediatric end-of-life care. Faulkner explains that this is not a well-traveled road. “I help people walk this path,” she says. “I’m with them at every step, educating and empowering them through each phase of the process. We navigate it together.”
A graduate of Columbia University in multiple disciplines—nursing, religion, pediatric pulmonary care and marketing management—Faulkner has held progressively executive positions within the healthcare industry throughout her career. For the past 11 years, she has specialized in pediatric hospice.
Faulkner’s appointment highlights Regional Hospice’s state leadership in pediatric hospice care. “No one is providing the care for children with life-ending illness the way that we do,” Faulkner says. This year, RHPC will begin construction on a center expansion, which will include four purpose-built pediatric suites that will be designed with pediatric patients in mind. This will be the first pediatric hospice unit in the east —and only the fifth nationwide.
“As we move forward in our commitment to caring for children at the end stage of life, we are incredibly grateful to have Cathie with us,” says Cynthia Emiry Roy, Regional Hospice and Palliative Care President & CEO. “Her grace, expertise and strength translate into the right kind of combination to help our young patients and their families.”
When asked how she manages to work with dying children, Faulkner shakes her head and smiles. “No one wants to lose a child, but people do,” she says. “If a family invites me in to share this space with them, and in some small way I can smooth the edges, I want to be there. Someone has to be there.”
Regional Hospice and Palliative Care (RHPC) has served Fairfield, New Haven, Hartford & Litchfield counties with nonprofit home hospice care for over 30 years. In 2015, RHPC opened the state-of-the-art Center for Comfort Care & Healing. This family-centered hospice residence is CT’s first and only private-suite facility, servicing patients and their families from throughout the country, especially in New York State and Connecticut. RHPC’s mission is to provide exceptional end-of-life care, comfort and compassion to infants, children, adults and their families with a dedicated staff of professionals.