Child Life Services

Our Mission

The mission of the Child Life Services Department is to assist and support patients and families in their adjustment to the hospital experience.  Emotional and developmental interventions are provided to ensure that the appropriate care and services are provided.  This mission is accomplished through collaborative interdisciplinary practice and education. 

Here at Boston Children’s Hospital, child life specialists are part of the healthcare team.  Members of the child life department work closely with the multidisciplinary team to provide developmental perspectives and support the varied needs of patients and families.

Child life specialists work to enhance patients’ emotional, social, and cognitive growth during a hospital visit, taking into consideration each child’s family, culture, and developmental needs.  They use developmental interventions and play to help patients and families adjust to and understand their health care experiences.

Click here to download our Child Life brochure

Child Life Specialists:

  • Promote patients’ development by normalizing daily routines, activities, and environment

  • Educate and prepare patients and families about the healthcare experience in an approach that meets their individual needs

  • Provide individualized support to siblings of hospitalized children

  • Encourage developmentally appropriate activities and play

  • Help patients enhance their coping skills when dealing with fear, pain, anxiety and separation from family, friends, and their familiar environments

  • Provide consultation to healthcare team and supports families regarding patients’ developmental and psychosocial issues

  • Provide individualized support before, during, and after medical procedures

  • Facilitate medical play in individual and group settings

  • Promote family-centered care by offering information, advocacy and guidance

  • Educate hospital staff about child development and related issues

  • Initiate tutoring support for patients missing school due to hospitalization

  • Support celebrations of milestones including birthdays and holidays

  • Supervise and train student interns and volunteers

What is Child Life?

How to contact us: 

Ask your nurse or a member of your healthcare team if you would like to meet with your child life specialist.

Child Life Services

Boston Children’s Hospital

300 Longwood Avenue, Fegan 049

Boston, MA, 02115

Office: 617-355-6551

Child life specialists also assist patients in in Boston Children’s satellite locations Mon-Fri:

Boston Children’s Hospital at Peabody

Boston Children’s Hospital at Waltham

Boston Children’s Hospital at Martha Eliot Health Center

Child Life Halloween 2016