Child Life Specialists and Child Life Assistants

When a child is hospitalized due to illness or injury, normal activities and relationships are disrupted, often resulting in increased fear and stress. Child life staff provide opportunities to prepare children and family members for the medical experiences and teach techniques to help reduce stress and anxiety. Child Life Staff also support a child's development by promoting normalization activities.

Our Child life staff are also trained to provide emotional support, medical play opportunities and give information to siblings regarding the hospital experience.

Child Life Specialists and Child Life Assistants work together as a team to support our patients and their families.

Meet the Child Life Team.

Child Life Specialist

  • Provides emotional support to children and their families.
  • Prepares children and families for health care experiences (admission, medical and surgical procedures).
  • Assesses children’s development and behavior.
  • Provides opportunities for normal play activities and therapeutic medical play interactions.
  • Teaches stress point coping techniques (diversion, distraction, relaxation) to help reduce stress and anxiety and suggests positive coping ideas during intrusive procedures.
  • Gives information regarding sibling support.
  • Discusses bereavement and related issues when appropriate.

Child Life Assistant

  • Implements age-appropriate individualized and group activities in coordination with a Child Life Specialist.
  • Supports the psychosocial and developmental needs of children and their families in coordination with a Child Life Specialist.
  • Supervises volunteers in coordination with a Child Life Specialist.
  • Escorts and acts as a hospital representative for entertainers and special guests.
  • Processes toy donations.

Where is Child Life in the hospital?

Child Life can be found on all inpatient, outpatient and intensive care areas of the hospital.