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Learn more about our Child Life Program & Specialists here at White Memorial

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white memorial child life program

Since we just celebrated Child Life Month in March, we wanted to share a little bit more about our Child Life Program & Specialists here are the White. Our two Child Life Specialists Leticia Vargas, MS, CLS, and Tina Aguilera, MS, CCLS, are trained professionals with expertise in helping children and their families overcome the challenges of hospitalization, illness and disability. Because children process information of the world around them much differently than adults, managing the effects of

stress and trauma is also distinctly different. Without the assistance of a professional who understands their unique perspective, children of all ages may experience emotions such as fear, shame, confusion and loneliness, which can inhibit their natural development, and have lasting negative effects on their wellbeing.

Child Life Specialists focus on the psychosocial needs of children, collaborating with parents and others to: 1) Ease a child’s fear and anxiety with therapeutic and recreational play activities. 2) Foster an environment that incorporates emotional support. 3) Encourage understanding and cooperation by providing non-medical preparation and support for children undergoing tests, surgeries and other medical procedures. 4) Advocate for family-centered care. 5) Engage and energize children and families by coordinating special events, entertainment, and activities. 6) Consider the needs of siblings or other children also affected by a child’s illness or trauma. 7) Support families confronting grief and bereavement. 8) Provide information and resources for parents and members of the interdisciplinary team.

A Child Life Specialist is available in Peds, PICU, and occasionally NICU week days from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. and Thursdays from 3 – 7 p. m. Weekend hours vary according

to census; however, a specialist is available every day! You can reach Tina or Letty at ext. 2125.