The Hidden Costs of Hospital Care for Children

Children in Hospital Ireland (CIH) has advocated for the rights of children and young people in health services, and for better support for their parents/carers for over five decades.

Our achievements during the life of the organisation have significantly contributed to enhancements in the care of the hospitalised child. In its early years, CIH advocated for the rights of parents to have unrestricted visiting hours in hospitals, the right of children and young people to access education in hospital and the rights of children to access play while in hospital.  We continue to advocate on behalf of children, young people and their families through our programme of education and advocacy.

Children in Hospital Ireland’s concerns and recommendations have been recognised by the Department of Health, medical personnel and other voluntary groups. This recognition has been reflected in the inclusion of a number of significant additions in national guidelines and policies relating to children’s healthcare in Ireland.

CIH utilises the principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and of the Charter on Children’s Healthcare developed by the European Association for Children in Hospital (EACH Charter) as the basis for our education and advocacy work.

Our advocacy work draws on research findings and on the knowledge gained by our staff and volunteers through our contact with children, parents and hospital personnel. We participate in and contribute to a wide range of relevant forums relating to children’s healthcare.

CIH facilitates the Network of Childhood Illness Organisations (NCIO) which is a forum for organisations who work with children with specific illnesses. Through this network, CIH can strengthen the reach and impact of our advocacy work.

Download our Financial Research report which exposes some of the hidden, non-medical costs of having a child in hospital.

This survey asked over 300 parents about their out of pocket expenses including travel costs, meals, overnight stays, care of other family members, and whether they have lost income. It also asks about which sources of financial support, if any, they were receiving.