Child Life Services

For a child, going to a hospital or medical office can be scary. Painful treatments, new surroundings, separation from family and friends, and changes in routines can increase these fears. Child Life Services at Children’s Hospital of Greenville Health System (GHS) focuses on reducing the stress of health care experiences and on helping families foster healthy coping strategies.

Child life specialists are experts in child development who are trained to help children and their families cope with stressful and potentially traumatic events. They use play, self-expression, and educational activities to support children and families during medical experiences.

GHS Children’s Hospital is one of only two hospitals in the Upstate that have Certified Child Life Specialists as part of your child’s health care team.

Child Life Activities and Services

To meet the unique needs of children and families, Child Life Services provides the following activities and services…

  • Therapeutic and recreational play activities to ease a child’s fears and anxieties.
  • Educational preparation and sensory explanations to help children learn about what they will see, feel, and hear in the hospital or medical setting
  • Planning, rehearsing, and implementing coping strategies to help children and their families cope with hospitalization and medical procedures
  • Support for siblings to help them understand and cope with their brother’s or sister’s illness or condition
  • Bereavement support for children and families facing the loss of a loved one
  • Special events, such as holiday parties and camps, for children in the hospital or who are living with chronic illnesses to allow them to participate in normal childhood activities
  • Developmental screenings for children assessed to be at risk for developmental delays.

Areas of Service

Child life services are currently available in the following areas…

  • Pediatric Inpatient Units
  • Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU)
  • BI-LO Charities Children’s Cancer Center Inpatient Unit
  • BI-LO Charities Children’s Cancer Center Outpatient Clinic
  • Children’s Emergency Center
  • Inpatient/Outpatient Surgery at Greenville Memorial Hospital
  • Radiology at Greenville Memorial Hospital
  • Children’s Hospital Outpatient Center at Patewood Medical Campus
  • Forensic Pediatric Clinics (Children’s Advocacy Medical Program)
  • Foster Care Assessment Center (Pendleton Place)

Child life also accepts referrals for children who receive services in some areas not currently staffed by child life specialists. If your child is having an upcoming procedure or difficulty coping with a medical experience, please call (864) 455-7846.