A child life specialist is a trained professional who helps children and their families understand the hospital environment. They are also skilled at providing developmentally appropriate support, preparation and therapeutic play opportunities to decrease anxieties associated with being in the hospital.
Ways in which a child life specialist can help a child/family for a medical imaging exam include:
- Providing preparation to children and families prior to medical imaging exams by using developmentally appropriate language, books and other teaching materials to reduce stress and increase understanding
- Engaging in medical play with children by using specially adapted dolls, as well as real and pretend medical equipment, to enhance understanding and clarify misconceptions
- Helping to manage pain and encourage relaxation by offering various techniques such as comfort positioning, guided imagery and deep breathing exercises
- Offering procedural support by demonstrating positive coping strategies using developmentally appropriate items
Emily Rogers is a certified child life specialist and has been supporting patients and families for medical imaging exams at our hospital since 2005. Emily received her master’s degree in child life and family-centered care from Wheelock College in Boston, Mass., and earned her certification in 2002. She is also an active member of the Child Life Council. As the medical imaging child life specialist, Emily is passionate about working with patients and families and tailoring interventions to best meet their needs.
To learn more about how a child life specialist can support you and your child for an upcoming medical imaging exam, please contact Emily at 312.227.3274. Visit Family Services to learn more about the way we practice family-centered care.