Certified Child Life Specialists
A hospital stay can be frightening and stressful for children. Child Life Specialists at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center can help with these services:
- Medical Preparation: We help children understand what will happen at the hospital. By giving just the right amount of information, based on the child’s age, we can lessen a child’s fears.
- Support During Procedures: Child life specialists can help reduce pain and anxiety during medical procedures. We offer coping and breathing techniques and provide emotional support.
- Surgical Care: Pre-surgery tours help children and families become familiar with the hospital before admission.
- Medical Play: Children become comfortable by using real or pretend medical equipment and supplies to express their feelings.
- Therapeutic Play: Can help decrease pain, meet treatment goals, teach new skills and shorten recovery time. Play activities can take place at a child’s bedside or in a playroom.
- Support for Brothers and Sisters: Brothers and sisters are affected by illness and injury, too. Our specialists help them understand what is happening and how to work through their feelings.
A key function of Child Life is promoting family-centered care, involving parents and family members as partners to health providers in a child’s care.
- Choice: We provide the information families need to make educated choices about treatment. Family members cope better with their child’s illness when they understand treatment options.
- Respect: Family-centered care involves respect for each family’s values, beliefs, customs and background. Respect is also demonstrated for family strengths and the central role of the family in a child’s life.
- Information Sharing: Our clinical staff members provide medical information to families and value the personal information families provide about their children.
- Support: We respect families’ decisions, offer comfort as they cope with their child’s illness and work to meet social, developmental and emotional needs.
- Collaboration: Medical staff and family members work together in the best interest of the child. Families are involved in all aspects of planning and delivering medical care.
- Empowerment: Family-centered care acknowledges that family members have the right and authority to care for their children.