Banner Health Services  

Child Life Specialists

child life specialists at Banner Health help pediatric patients  

For children and their families, a  hospital stay can be frightening and stressful. Banner Health has a dedicated team of Child Life Specialists who can make this time easier for everyone.

Our experts in caring for children, Child Life Specialists, can help with these services:

  • Support Before the Procedure: We meet with children and their families ahead of their procedure and help children understand what is going to happen to them at the hospital. Through the use of toys, drawings and other methods, we give just the right amount of information, based on the child’s age and lessen a child's anxiety.
  • Support During Procedures: Child Life Specialists can help reduce pain and anxiety during medical procedures. We offer tips on coping and breathing techniques and provide emotional support.
  • Tours: 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.

Core concepts:

  • 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

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