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The University of Chicago Medicine - Comer Children's Hospital

Expressive Therapies

One of the goals of Child Life is to offer children the opportunity to express themselves, as well as their fears and concerns, in a safe and supportive environment. Since children's needs vary, we have added a variety of special therapeutic programs to allow for self-expression.

Art Therapy

Art therapy is one way to help young patients cope with their hospital stay while helping to maintain their regular routines. Our licensed art therapist runs creative expression groups in the playroom--a central play space for young children. Individual art sessions are also available for patients at their bedsides.

Music Therapy

Music can have a positive effect on the physical and emotional well-being of many patients. Visiting musicians and music therapists lead interactive music sessions with patients.

Pet Therapy

Rainbow Animal Assisted Therapy, Inc.

This unique therapy involves specially trained and veterinarian-approved adult dogs provided by a nonprofit organization. With proper permission, these dogs visit and interact with children in the playroom. The program is designed to enhance the emotional, psychological, social, and physical well-being of patients.

Medical Bingo

Patients can participate in a weekly bingo game in our playroom. Patients who are unable to attend the playroom are still able to participate in this activity from their bedsides through a "live broadcast" on our closed circuit television channel. Medical bingo provides children with the opportunity to explore medical terminology in a safe and fun way.


Cooking provides children a way to express themselves and interact with peers while doing something familiar and fun. Mixing batter, pounding dough, and other cooking activities can be therapeutic for children. Cooking projects are provided weekly in the playroom.

Special Events

The Child Life program hosts a variety of special events throughout the year to entertain and help distract young patients from the daily hospital routine. These special programs are often held in the playroom and include holiday celebrations and performances by magicians and storytellers.

Closed Circuit Television

To enhance opportunities for all hospitalized children, we can broadcast playroom activities to patient rooms, so everyone is able to get involved.