Child Life specialists facilitate coping and use a variety of interventions to support the emotional needs of hospitalized children, as well as their siblings when appropriate. Child Life specialists prepare children for medical procedures in an age-appropriate way and provide children with coping strategies throughout painful, invasive or difficult situations. They work to promote child development and provide opportunities for therapeutic play, socialization, mastery, and normalcy in a physically and emotionally safe environment.
Child Life specialists:
- Assess children's understanding of their hospitalization, illness, treatment or procedure
- Offer medical education, preparation and support to children undergoing tests, surgeries, and other medical procedures using coping skills, distraction or guided imagery
- Encourage children's growth and development by incorporating play and age-appropriate activities
- Provide means of diversion, expression, and healing through art, music, pet therapy and other programs
- Assist brothers and sisters who are coping with their sibling's illness or hospitalization
- Help families deal with death and grief
Contact Child Life staff weekdays at 860.545.9700 or call 860.545.9000 evenings, weekends and holidays.