Cancer and Blood Diseases Center
Resources and support services
In addition to providing medical care, Dana-Farber/Children's Hospital Cancer Center strives to also meet all of your family’s emotional and quality-of-life needs. We know that unfamiliar places, especially hospitals, often create anxiety and fear for a child. We also know this isn’t an easy time or task for parents, who have their own fears and concerns about the situation. Our family support services will help address many of your needs and concerns.
Our family-support teams include:
patient care coordinators, who are available to assist with anticipated medical supply needs. Before admission, a coordinator will communicate with your insurance company. In addition, the coordinator will meet with you to discuss home health care needs when your child is discharged.
clinical dietitians, who can help with your child's specific diet concerns. Our dietitians can assist you with this and other dietary needs.
psychologists and social workers, who provide confidential support to parents and guardians during a child's hospitalization. They also assist with accessing community resources for families.
resource specialists, who are available to assist families during hospitalization, with information about services available through the hospital and accommodations such as housing and transportation available in and around the city of Boston.
Child Life specialists, who help children cope with their hospitalization. In addition, they are available to parents who would like to discuss issues related to siblings or child development. They’re also available to your child before he comes into the hospital, for reassurance purposes.
patient and family educator, who oversees the Patient and Family Resource Room. The patient and family educator helps families find information about the type of cancer their child has using books, videos and the Internet; teaches parents how to use Care Pages to build a customizable Web page for their child; and oversees many family-focused events and respite programs held on the floor.
school liaisons and “Back-to-School” counselors, who help children treated for cancer to return to school. Our trained staff members work with your child, your family and teachers to make the transition back to school as smooth as possible by educating classmates and teachers and providing resources to help children keep up with schoolwork.
Patient and family resource rooms
Providing you with information and access to educational resources is a priority at Dana-Farber/Children’s Hospital Cancer Center.
We offer two special resource rooms, one at Children’s Hospital Boston and one at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where you can access the Internet, read educational pamphlets and books, and speak with education specialists. These rooms also serve as a resource for patients, offering fun activities for children of all ages.
Located on 6 West between the Stem Cell Transplantation and General Oncology units, the room is funded through donations from area businesses and families, and staffed by two Patient and Family Educators. The Resource Room provides access to reference materials and support programs that cover a wide array of educational topics. Some materials are more traditional, like books and pamphlets, while others are interactive, such as videos and computer games. Both general and disease-specific information is available on topics including, but not limited to, hematological diseases, cancers, complementary therapies, nutrition and coping with illness.
The room has three computers, which are available for internet searches as well as word processing, emailing, creating and maintaining patient Web sites (CarePages), and playing children's games. The Resource Room also often serves as a classroom for parents during the day, where they can learn about all aspects of their child's care, from nutrition and blood counts to what to expect after discharge.
Families, patients and visitors find comfort in the warm nature of the room, and they use it as a gathering place to seek information, meet others, relax, play games, or email distant family and friends. The Resource Room is open seven days a week during the following times:
|Monday||10:00 am to 8:30 pm|
|Tuesday||10:00 am to 9:00 pm|
|Wednesday||10:00 am to 10:00 pm|
|Thursday||10:00 am to 8:30 pm|
|Friday||10:00 am to 10:00 pm|
|Saturday||10:00 am to 7:00 pm|
|Sunday||10:00 am to 7:00 pm|
Located in the Dana-Farber lobby, as well as a satellite office adjacent to the Jimmy Fund Clinic, the Center provides a comfortable environment in which to learn more about cancer and treatment options. Part reference library, part lending library, the center provides access to books, brochures and computing equipment, as well as information about support groups relevant to your personal experience.
Our family-centered services also include:
The Center for Families at Children's helps families find information and resources to understand their child's medical condition and participate in his care. In addition to providing traditional reference materials, the center provides access to special programs such as the Gift Basket and Book of the Month raffles. The Center can also provide information about accommodations that are available to Dana-Farber/Children's Hospital Cancer Center patient families, including hotels, hospitality homes and dormitory-style rooms at the hospital.
Our chaplaincy at Children's represents a variety of faiths, including Islam, Judaism, Protestantism and Roman Catholicism. Our chaplains are available 24 hours a day to offer spiritual and emotional support, with sensitivity to families' religious traditions and primary language. Patients and families can request a chaplain's visit by calling the office at 617-355-6664, or by speaking with a nurse.
Spiritual Care at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute also offers religious and spiritual support services for your child and your family. Clinically trained chaplains from a variety of perspectives, including interfaith, Islamic, Jewish, Protestant and Roman Catholic, are available to meet with you before, during and after treatment. Chaplains are available 24 hours a day.