Our Purpose

The goal of MedPal–CNN is to guide health professionals and parents to learn more about pediatric palliative care (PPC) for serious conditions that might shorten the lives of children. In turn, we hope to use technology to help health professionals to value PPC and offer it to the world’s most vulnerable children.

Our Content

Dr. Justin Amery’s book, A Really Practical Handbook of Children’s Palliative Care, forms the basis of this application’s content. Our app development team expanded upon the already excellent information found in Dr. Amery’s book to create MedPal–CNN. We also drew heavily upon Dr. Michelle Grunauer’s considerable knowledge of pediatric palliative care, which she has gleaned from years of study, research, and clinical practice as she has pioneered novel palliative care initiatives in Ecuador. Dr. Michelle Meiring, a South African pediatric palliative care advocate and pioneer, has also contributed to this app. Finally, the app also includes a multitude of tools and recommendations from organizations like the World Health Organization, Together for Short Lives, and others. 

Our Team

This application has been created with the help and resources of some of the world’s foremost experts in pediatric palliative care in under-resourced settings, including Dr. Michelle Grunauer, Dr. Justin Amery, and Dr. Michelle Meiring.

Michelle Grunauer MD, PhD

Michelle Grunauer MD, PhD, is currently the Dean of the School of Medicine of the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Quito, Ecuador. Dr. Michelle Grunauer has completed advanced degrees in pulmonology, critical care, pediatric palliative care, as well as in child and family mental health. She is the founder of the Pediatric and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of the Hospital de los Valles in Quito, Ecuador. She has a number of scientific publications in her areas of specialty and has won international awards for implementation and training in the Integrated Model of Care, which combines palliative medicine and critical care. She is also co-founder of Fundación Azulado, an Ecuadorian non-profit organization that works to eliminate child abuse.  

Dr. Michell Grunauer leads the team which created the content for and developed MedPal–CNN. Her goal is to provide palliative care (PC) to her patients and to promote access to learning opportunities about PC to healthcare professionals in order to improve the quality of life of children in low-resource countries and other contexts around the world.

Caley Mikesell, BPH

Caley Mikesell, BPH, works as Dr. Michelle Grunauer’s research assistant at the Universidad de San Francisco de Quito in Quito, Ecuador. Mikesell studied public health and currently works in various research projects focused on pediatric palliative care, models of care, child abuse, and other topics. Her passion is investigating mental health and health systems in order to improve marginalized groups’ access to quality healthcare.

Diego Egüez

Diego Egüez was in his last year of electronic engineering major at USFQ when his fascination with the power of programming inspired him to begin a major in computer sciences. An avid autodidact, Egüez began developing simple applications in his free time and soon after launched his career as a programmer.

Francisco Padilla, BFA

Francisco Padilla, BFA, is a fine arts major at USFQ. A gifted painter, he has presented his work in galleries around Quito, Ecuador and often lends his talents in illustration and graphic design to support projects in USFQ’s School of Medicine.

Acknowledgments and Contributions

Dr. Tatiana Fernández assisted in medical translations, Clara Cullen, BS, assisted in technical content revision, and USFQ’s Medical Student Association assisted in proofreading. 

Our Sponsors