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Dr Varinka Voigt
2019 KIDS Germany presentation_working g
KIDS Germany Leader carolin_ruther
KIDS Germany Leader antonia_pelshenke

Welcome to iCAN KIDS Germany! 


Kids and Families Impacting Disease Through Science (KIDS) Germany is an advisory group of children, adolescents, and families focused on understanding, communicating, and improving medicine, research, and innovation for children.

KIDS Germany was founded in March 2019 by Antonia Pelshenke and Dr. Carolin Ruther at the Dr. von Hauner Children’s Hospital in Munich. As all of our iCAN Chapters are, KIDS Germany is a collaboration between the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), Section on Advances in Therapeutics and Technology (SOATT), local AAP Chapters, children’s hospitals, local schools, and other partners.

The aim of our group is to give children and adolescent patients the opportunity to report on their hospital experience in the context of regular meetings and to jointly develop concrete proposals for better implementation of children's rights in everyday hospital life. The work is based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the EACH Charter and the Hauner Charter on the Rights of Children in Hospitals.


KIDS Germany membership consists of children ages 8 to 18 and their parents who have:

  • Past clinical experience

  • Experience using hospital services

  • Chronic medical conditions and/or take medication regularly

  • Interest in medicine and/or research

"What makes our iCAN KIDS Germany Chapter Great"

Our KIDS Germany chapter wants to address sick children and adolescents as experts in their own field and be a role model for other children's hospitals in Germany. Together with two patients and members of the group, we already presented our work at the 1st German Children's Health Summit at the end of April 2019. The summit was an expert conference on the significance of children's rights for pediatrics, at which the directors of all German university pediatric clinics and members of various parent and patient associations were represented. The positive feedback we received there showed us how important it is to give children and young people a platform to talk about their experiences and to actively involve them in discussions about current developments in the health care system.

"Just like iCAN, we aim to give sick children a voice and to support their concerns and needs. So we are very happy to join iCAN as new chapter group."

Since the beginning of 2020 we are implementing the first Child Life Specialist team in Germany. Lead by psychologist Dr. Varinka Voigt the team supports sick children according to their individual needs and strengthens their rights in the hospital. The new team members will become more and more involved in our advisory group so that it can grow and flourish. Additionally, the CLS-program will be evaluated by our public health department. The advisory board will be included in the design and process of the evaluation. Their input means a lot to us!

KIDS Germany is delighted to be a part of iCAN Research.  

Contact us at:

Antonia Pelshenke:

Working Group:

Dr. Carolin Ruther:

Dr. Varinka Voigt:

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