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Importance of Play

Play is a pleasant and non-threatening way your child learns about the world. Play provides something safe and familiar during stressful times such as hospitalization or medical procedures. The Child Life Program encourages your child to continue playing while in the hospital in order to promote recovery, normal development, and independence.

Medical Play

Your child may encounter medical equipment in the hospital setting that can cause anxiety and fear. Child Life Specialists can use medical play to help your child express feelings related to the hospital. By using real medical equipment to perform procedures on dolls, the patient can gain a sense of control and understanding.

Activity Areas

Activity Rooms are located throughout the hospital, as well as an outdoor play deck outside the main playroom on the third floor. The Child Life staff or volunteers can show you which playroom meets the needs of your child's age and ability. Because no medical procedures are allowed in these areas children see these playrooms as a safe place.

  • Siblings and child visitors under 14 may visit the playroom with the patient. The adult caregiver must stay with visitors under 14.
  • If the patient is on isolation or has had a fever in the last 24 hours, he or she should not be in the playroom. Toys can be borrowed for your child to play with in the rooms.
  • The Teen Room is a place for those 12 and up.
  • The patient can come to the playroom with staff or a caregiver during non-playroom hours.
  • "A Parent's Guide...Play and Your Immobilized Child" Pamphlet