Programs available for your child

Child Life services

Through play activities, preparation and support, the Child Life team will actively engage patients and help them cope with their illness, treatment, and their time in the hospital. This team also:

  • Focuses on the social and emotional impact of illness and hospitalization.
  • Promotes a positive hospital experience for children.
  • Use play as a tool for socialization, expression of feelings, and learning
  • Assesses the physical, social and emotional responses of the child and family to illness and hospitalization.
  • Provides therapeutic play to enhance coping.
  • Facilitates safe play environments and play programs and co-ordinates special events.
  • Advocates for the needs of children and families.
  • Collaborates with children, families, health care professionals and community agencies.
  • Provides supportive relationships for patients and families.
  • Embraces the value of play in commitment to children’s health and development.

You can reach our Child Life staff at KGH at 613-549-6666 extension 3481.

Pet therapy

Pet therapy is available on pediatrics every Wednesday at 1:00 through our Child Life services team. Your child may benefit from a visit by one of our therapy dogs as the purpose of pet therapy is to help your child recover or cope with their health problem. A member will be present at the time of the therapy session along with the volunteer/animal handler. To participate, please let a member of your child's care team know they would like to be visited by a therapy dog. 

Pre-operative surgical tours

To help prepare your child for an upcoming surgery, you can book a pre-operative surgical tour with a member of our Child Life team. Knowing what to expect on the day of their surgery may help lessen your child's anxiety about their procedure. To book a surgical tour call 613-549-6666 extension 3481. 

Rooming-In Program

Our Rooming-In Program is now available for babies who show signs of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS). NAS refers to symptoms that babies may have if their mothers used methadone or other drugs during pregnancy. This is often called “withdrawal.” 

Our goal is to keep mothers and babies together as much as possible. When your baby is born, we will review the plan for your baby’s care, which was made during your visit with the social worker and pediatrician. If the plan for your baby is to stay with you on the postpartum ward and your baby is doing well, you will stay together in the mother baby ward. You and the nurses will care for your baby and check for symptoms of withdrawal. 

If your baby develops symptoms of withdrawal, you and your family can help by comforting your baby. Comfort measures can reduce the symptoms of withdrawal. You can learn more about comfort measures in this booklet.

Our process brings you and your family together with members of the health care team to will help us understand your background, your strengths and your needs during your pregnancy as well as after the birth of your baby. They will also help you learn about NAS and make plans for your baby’s birth.

A Pediatrician or Nurse Practitioner will talk to you about what to expect after your baby’s birth and the treatment your baby may need. A Social Worker will support you during pregnancy and after your baby’s birth. The social worker can help you and your family cope with life challenges and connect you with helpful resources in your community. You can learn more about NAS in this booklet.

Pediatric oncology

Cancer in children is rare and when parents find out that their child has cancer it is a very difficult time. The Pediatric Oncology Program at KGH and the Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario provides a team approach where the focus is on the patient and family throughout the entire care experience. The Pediatric Oncology team helps children and families cope with the changes that occur in their life.

As a further support, there is a parent representative on the Pediatric Oncology team. Contact information for the parent representative may be obtained from team members or in the clinic. 

For further information about the Pediatric Oncology Program please contact the Coordinator at 613-549-6666 extension 3831.