CHILD LIFE SERVICES
Oftentimes, going to the hospital is associated with fear, anxiety, and pain. The Child life team serves the needs of a diverse population of children from all developmental levels and medical diagnoses.
The Child Life team collaborates with the patient’s family, medical team, and other disciplines to help foster emotional safety and family-centered care. Our goal is to minimize the fear and anxiety most children experience in the medical setting. We promote positive experiences and effective coping techniques for our patients and their families.
Child life interventions are tailored to the individual needs of each patient. Interventions focus on reducing the stress and anxiety that is experienced by children and families during hospitalization and other healthcare experiences.
WHO WE ARE
The Child Life Program consists of a team of Certified Child Life Specialists. The Certified Child Life Specialist (CCLS) credential is the exclusive child life certification, issued by the Child Life Certification Commission, a subsidiary of the Association of Child Life Professionals. Certified Child Life Specialists are experts in child development. They are educated and clinically trained in the developmental impact of illness and trauma.
WHO DO WE TREAT / CARE FOR
Child Life Specialists serve pediatric patients and family members admitted on the Pediatric Unit, the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, and the Pediatric Short Stay Unit. On a referral basis, a Child Life Specialist may also work with pediatric burn patients, NICU patients, and the children of adult patients who are terminally ill or at end of life.
SERVICES WE OFFER
The SCVMC Child Life Program offers patients and families a wide variety of services including therapeutic play, medical play, health and diagnosis education, behavioral support, coping strategies, and procedural preparation and support.
Child Life Specialists:
- Help children prepare for tests, surgery, and procedures using play and age-appropriate teaching materials
- Help children better understand their diagnosis, treatment, and plan of care
- Teach and coach children to use coping strategies in moments of stress and anxiety
- Develop and facilitate coping plans for children and families during stressful hospital experiences.
- Provide education to parents and caregivers on effects of hospitalization and illness on development
- Bring a sense of fun, mastery, and normalcy to children in the hospital setting through play opportunities
The Child Life team maintains and supervises play services in the playroom on the 5th floor of the Women and Children’s Center of the hospital. The playroom is a positive, safe space free from medical interventions and staff where our pediatric patients and visitors come to engage in a variety of play activities. Child Life Specialists and volunteers provide a selection of arts and crafts, games, pretend play, reading, and other fun activities in the playroom. One-on-one therapeutic play sessions with a Child Life Specialist take place in the playroom by appointment.
SPECIAL EVENTS AND VISITORS
Every year, Child Life Services coordinates special events for pediatric patients admitted to the hospital. Special visitors are hosted at the hospital to bring a sense of fun and encouragement to our patients; some of which include Santa, Superheroes & Princesses, first responders and local sports personalities.
Child life specialists also help facilitate the following services:
- Holiday-related activities and festivities
- Musical activities to promote self-expression
- Animal-assisted therapy where animals provide comfort to children
Playroom volunteers are valuable members of the team on the Pediatrics Units. Through the SCVMC Volunteer Services Department, volunteers may be trained to assist with play activities for children on the Pediatric Units. To learn more, please visit Volunteering at SCVMC
WHERE OUR SERVICES ARE OFFERED
Child Life services are available to pediatric patients and family members at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center.
751 S. Bascom Ave,
San Jose, CA 95128
Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (SCVMC) Hospital and Clinic providers can place a referral for Child Life Services for your child.
HOW TO CONTACT THE CHILD LIFE TEAM
Call the pediatric playroom at 408-885-2920 for more information.