Firefly Chat

The PPCC Firefly Chat is a series of interactive virtual discussions - free of charge - that explore issues facing the pediatric palliative care community in PA and beyond.

February Firefly Chat - More Than Medicine: Using Creative Supports and Therapies to Help Children with Medical Complexities

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 — Noon-1:00 PM EST

We know that caring for a child with medical complexities can be stressful, overwhelming and challenging.  While traditional medicines are often the first-line of treatment, the use of alternative therapies and supports are becoming more readily available and utilized.

During this Firefly Chat session, we will highlight the roles of a Recreation Therapist and a Massage Therapist who help care for children with medical complexities both in the hospital and home setting. Discussions will highlight how the needs of verbal and non-verbal children can be assessed and to learn more about the experiences of a Parent/Caregiver familiar with these services.

We hope that you can join us as we explore these unique services and discuss ways that children and their families can be supported even when these specific resources are not available.

As always, the Firefly Chat is free of charge. Registration is required.

Click HERE to Register.


Ellen Liberto, BS, LPN, LMT, CHP

Ellen Liberto currently works with Hospice and Community Care in Lancaster, PA. Ellen has been a massage therapist for 26 years with the privilege of focusing her skills on providing massage/touch therapy in a clinical environment for the past 16 years.  Ellen works with pediatric and adult patients to create and provide personalized treatment plans to enhance comfort and provide symptom relief by integrating a variety of touch therapy/relaxation techniques. Ellen also provides education on self-care strategies for caregivers.

Megan Carlin, MEd, CTRS, CPST

Megan Carlin is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist working for the Child Life Program. In her 11 years working for Penn State Health Children’s Hospital, Megan has primarily worked in the Pediatric Intermediate Care Unit assisting children with both acute and chronic illnesses and injury, to cope with hospitalizations by providing psychosocial support to patients and their families.

Peggy Coover, LPN, Bereaved Parent, Caregiver

Peggy Coover, LPN, was inspired to attend nursing school after her oldest daughter, Amber, passed away from complications related to Canavan Disease. Peggy has three other children as well, including a healthy son and 2 more daughters with Canavan Disease. Her middle daughter, Ariel, also passed away from Canavan Disease. Peggy and her family have been involved with palliative care and hospice for many years, and she is always happy to share her experiences to help providers, families and caregivers.


Dana Dombrowski, MSW, LSW
Social Worker and Psychosocial Program Coordinator
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Dana Dombrowski graduated from the University of Connecticut in 2003 with a BS in Family Development and a minor in Sociology. She went on to attend graduate school at the University of Pennsylvania where she received her Master’s degree in Social Work in 2005. Upon completion of this program, she obtained her LSW and was hired by The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia as a Pediatric Oncology Social Worker. She worked in that position specializing in patients with a terminal cancer diagnosis, grief and loss for over 8 years. In 2013, Dana joined CHOP’s palliative care team (PACT Team) as a social worker and the psychosocial program coordinator.


Firefly Chat Archive

What Can Bereaved Siblings Teach Us?

The Challenges of Organizing Medical Data

Grief and the Holidays


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Let's Talk About Masks: Identifying Barriers and Solutions to Communicating Effectively

Presentation Materials


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Stressed But Not Stressed out: Practical Tools for Managing Stress

Presentation Materials

Mindfulness/Gratitude Practices


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A Day in the Life of a Caregiver

384 Fox Chapel Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15238 | Contact Betsy Hawley at:

PPCC is not a health care provider and does not give medical advice or treatment. PPCC does not endorse or recommend any listed facilities, service providers, or support groups herein. PPCC offers the list and information as a resource only. PPCC does not pre-evaluate, or consider the Medicare/Medicaid status of the providers.

The Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition is a registered 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization.  Donations are tax-deductible according to the IRS’s rules and regulations.  The official registration and financial information for PPCC may be obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of State by calling toll-free within Pennsylvania 1-800-732-0999.