Supporting Families Impacted by Childhood Cancer: Child Life Specialists
Excellent healthcare is obviously the most important thing on everyone's mind when a child is diagnosed with cancer. But once that is in place, the reality of treatment sets in. Having a family member in the hospital places tremendous strain on the entire family. The hospital providing care should have a variety of supports available. At Pediatric Hospitals, that usually includes Child Life Specialists. Certified Child Life Specialists are trained healthcare professionals who provide education and support for pediatric patients and their families undergoing medical treatment. They can be an amazing help as a family steps into the unknown environment of illness and treatment in the healthcare setting. In addition to providing education, preparation for procedures and treatment, and support, they are also in charge of the hospital's playrooms. Play is vital in the lives of children, helping to relieve stress and provide a sense of normalcy. Most hospitals also welcome siblings in to play whenever possible, which certainly helps families remain close and cohesive.
More recently, Child Life Specialists have been branching out. They are no longer only available for support while families are within the hospital. Looking for an independent Certified Child Life Specialist (CCLS) near you? Let us know! We have a network of Child Life Specialist contacts across the U.S. and Canada who may be able to help. In addition, How to Care for Kids is currently recruiting experienced CCLS' interested in providing private sessions and creating unique partnerships in their own neighborhoods. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you!
Fore more information about the Child Life profession, go to www.childlife.org.