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When Children are Patients: Emerson Hospital
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Child Story

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When Relatives Are Patients

When a loved one is in the hospital, it can be hard for a child to understand and comprehend what is happening. Emerson is proud to offer support to help families cope and explain to children what is happening to their relative. The following support is available:

Critical Care

The Pediatric Intervention Team (PIT) is available to help families comfortably include their children in visiting and/or understanding the care of their critically ill family member being cared for in a medically intimidating environment. Social Work is also available to patients and families during a serious illness requiring specialized care in the Critical Care Unit. This includes counseling, support or consultation with PIT for children or grandchildren.


PIT is available to help families talk with children about cancer, including diagnosis, treatment, prognosis and impact on family life. The team consults with patients and families to find age-appropriate language for explaining the illness to their children. Social Work is also available to patients and families for support, counseling and resource referrals. This includes working in conjunction with PIT and the Mass General Cancer Center at Emerson Hospital - Bethke.

Post-Partum, Labor and Delivery, and Special Care Nursery

PIT is available for assisting families in adjusting to complicated birth experiences. The team helps families identify and express their concerns, offers supportive guidance and directs them to appropriate resources. Social Work is also available to patients and families for support, counseling and referrals for community resources. This includes working in consultation with the Pediatric Intervention Team.