Chris Evert Children's Hospital
Child Life Program

Child Life Program

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How Much Do You Know About Allergies?

Allergies are nothing to sneeze at. Learn how to better deal with them by taking the following quiz.

1. Which of these body systems causes allergic reactions?
2. An allergen is anything that triggers an allergic or hypersensitive response. Which of these could be an allergen?
3. What does the body release to combat allergens?
4. The most severe form of allergic reaction is called anaphylaxis. What happens?
5. Which of these symptoms is most common with a food allergy?
6. Which of these foods are most likely to trigger an allergy?
7. More Americans are developing a sensitivity to the plant proteins in latex materials or the chemical additives used in manufacturing the materials. Who's most at risk of developing a latex allergy?
8. Pediatricians who treat children with egg allergies are cautious about using certain vaccines because they may be grown in an egg medium. Which of these vaccines warrant caution?
9. Dust mites trigger indoor respiratory allergies. Where are you most likely to find them in the home?

Child Life Specialist and PatientThe Child Life Program understands the importance of human growth and development, as well as the impact illness, injury, disability and hospitalization can have on the process. Child Life Programs strive to reduce the stress of hospitalization through promoting the normal social, emotional, and educational development needs of the hospitalized children.

Child life specialists are trained professionals with expertise in helping children and their families overcome life’s most challenging events.  Armed with a strong background in child development and family systems, child life specialists promote effective coping through play, preparation, education, and self-expression activities. They provide emotional support for families, and encourage optimum development of children facing a broad range of challenging experiences, particularly those related to healthcare and hospitalization. Because they understand that a child’s wellbeing depends on the support of the family, child life specialists provide information, support and guidance to parents, siblings, and other family members. They also play a vital role in educating caregivers, administrators, and the general public about the needs of children under stress.

The goals of the Child Life Program are:

  • Providing developmentally appropriate play, creative arts opportunities that will encourage mastery, coping and the expression of feelings
  • Increase familiarity within the hospital surroundings, preparing children, teens and families for the medical experience
  • Develop supportive relationships with patients and family members
  • Bridge the gap between home and hospital by providing familiar activities (play, school, holiday parties and birthday parties, etc.)

Top 10 Reasons to call a Child Life Specialist

What is a Child Life Specialist?

Child Life Specialists have earned their bachelors or master’s degrees in Child Life, Child Development or a related field and are professionally certified by the Child Life Council. Through education and play, a child life specialist can help your child understand and cope with his/her hospitalization.

Services Provided:

  • Promote patient and family centered care
  • Developmentally appropriate playroom and bedside activities
  • Therapeutic play, including medical play
  • Preparation for procedures, surgeries and tests
  • Sibling support and education
  • Oncology support groups in conjunction with Gilda’s Club South Florida
  • Bereavement support
  • Special events, birthday and holiday celebrations are scheduled throughout the year.
  • Preoperative tour (click to download flyer with more information)
  • Pet-assisted therapy
  • Hospital tours for class visitations can be arranged by request
  • Parties & activities sponsored by community organizations

The Staff

The Child Life Staff consists of a Child Life Coordinator, Certified Child Life Specialists and a Music Therapist.  The Child Life staff has a vast knowledge and years of experience in childhood growth and development, and the effects of hospitalization and illness on children of all ages.

Donations and Support

Gifts of toys for playroom use, infant toys, craft supplies, books, DVD’s, video games, gift cards and the like are most welcome.  Donations must be new and safe. If you are interested in reviewing our wish list, click here. If you are interested making a monetary donation or in supporting a specific program, call the Broward Health Foundation at 954-712-3980.

For more information about our Child Life Program please call our Child Life Coordinator at 954-355-4356.

The Child Life Student Programs

Volunteering
Volunteering is an opportunity to gain familiarization with the hospital environment.  If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Jenny Mackie, Patient Experience Manager at 954-759-7400, or click here.

Internship
The internship is specifically designed to help students meet the eligibility requirements set by the Child Life Council for child life certification.  The internship will consist of 580 hours over a term of 13-15 weeks.  The interns will be directly supervised by a Certified Child Life Specialist.

Qualifications:
Candidates should be college seniors or graduate students with a background of child development or related fields.