The Child Life Specialist, Assoc is responsible for providing developmentally appropriate education, preparation and programming which optimizes growth and development of children, supports and maintains normal living patterns and minimizes psychosocial trauma associated with healthcare experiences. Possesses a theoretical knowledge base of normal child development and the psychosocial effects of hospitalization and illness on children and families. Demonstrates competence in clinical skills, problem solving and priority setting.
Support, direct and assess the performances of the Child Life Assistants. Is active in the training and supervision of students and volunteers.
Communicate developmentally appropriate explanations regarding medical encounters to patients and families. Assist patients and parents in understanding the issues of hospitalization and illness through preparation and post-procedural debriefing. Provide emotional support to patients during medical procedures through stress point coping techniques.
Collect, assess and record information regarding the patient and/or family to identify developmental level and psychosocial needs. Develop, update and implement individualized child life plans for priority patients. Document in the electronic chart in compliance with the child life policy and standards.
Maintain an environment which is safe, supportive and developmentally based. Provide therapeutic activities for supervised individuals and patient groups, which encourage expression of feelings and promote a sense of mastery and understanding of health care experiences.
Discuss death, bereavement, loss and related issues with patients, siblings and families, when appropriate.
Cooperatively communicate patient needs and normal child development issues with health care staff through documentation, rounds, patient care conferences and meetings. Refer patients and families to appropriate services and supporting programs as needed.
Advocate for patient and Family Centered Care. Establish rapport and orients the patient and family to the hospital environment. Support the child's relationship with parents, siblings and peers. Help the patient and family make the transition from home to hospital and from hospital to home.
Required level of education:
Bachelor's degree. Area of education: Child Life, Child Development, Child and Family Studies, Psychology or a related health care major. Completion of a 480 hour Child Life Internship under the direct supervision of a Certified Child Life Specialist. This reflects eligibility requirements to sit for the Child Life Professional Certification Examination with the Child Life Council, Inc., Bethesda, MD
Licensure, Certifications, and Clearances: *Cert Child Life Counsel * Certification required within 1 year of hireCPR required based on AHA standards that include both a didactic and skills demonstration component within 30 days of hire
Basic Life Support (BLS) OR Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
Regionally, nationally, and globally, UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh is a leader in the treatment of childhood conditions and diseases, a pioneer in the development of new and improved therapies, and a top educator of the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists. With generous community support, UPMC Children’s Hospital has fulfilled this mission since its founding in 1890. UPMC Children’s is named consistently to several elite lists of pediatric hospitals, including ranking on the prestigious U.S. News & World Report annual Honor Roll of Best Children’s Hospitals for 2021-2022.