We understand kids who need medical care face unique physical and emotional challenges.

Our patients might miss out on school, sports, and activities with family or friends. Their illness may make them feel tired, anxious, or sick. And if they have ongoing treatments, they may need help taking their mind off uncomfortable side effects.

Reducing Fears to Promote Healing

We know an abundance of support and attention can make the healthcare experience more endurable — and even enjoyable.

Whether your child needs a fun distraction or a safe space to share their feelings, our child life specialists can help. They are specially trained to turn stressful situations into positive ones.

About Child Life Specialists

Child life specialists are healthcare professionals. They have degrees in child development, education, psychology, or a related field. They also complete many hours of training under the supervision of certified child life specialists.

Our child life team helps your child understand their treatment — or take their mind off it. Along the way, we make sure your entire family feels educated and engaged.

Child Life Services We Offer

Our child life specialists work with any patient who needs help coping with a diagnosis, medical procedure, or hospital stay. We offer:

  • “Medical play” using dolls, pretend equipment, and simple words. This helps your child get used to a hospital setting or get ready for a procedure.
  • “Therapeutic play” using age-appropriate toys and activities. This helps kids express feelings, reach developmental milestones, or have a little fun.
  • Access to pet therapy and other patient and family support services.
  • Preoperative teaching and tours.
  • Developmental assessments.
  • Tutoring and other school support for eligible patients. Through our Hospital School Program, teachers work with your child’s school to coordinate ongoing education. They also help with school re-entry.
  • Fun activities for the whole family during holidays.

Child Life Wish List

If you would like to buy toys or games for our child life program, you may order items off our wish list. Your gift will bring joy to many young patients.