Children may be born with or develop serious, chronic, or terminal diseases, such as cancer, hemophilia, sickle cell, HIV/AIDS, or other diseases that compromise their lifestyles.
There are numerous outreach programs that support not only the sick child, but the parent and siblings as well. Some programs are brought to the hospital room, to delight and entertain the child that is too ill to be outdoors and play. Some programs offer unique camp experiences, where for one week, the child stops feeling he/she is "different" and enjoys activities with other ill children, under the close supervision of onsite doctors and nurses who volunteer their time.
The elderly, too, often times live with multiple complex medical problems. They sometimes have impaired mental abilities, often require assistance for daily activities, and have a lower ability for independent living.
At least 80% of Americans 65 and older are living with at least one chronic condition, and one out of two have one chronic illness.