Ease Surgery Fears With A Pre-Op Tour At Florida Hospital For Children

Planning for surgery is scary at any age, but especially when you are a child who doesn’t understand what is happening or what to expect. Fear of the unknown compounds the anxiety. But for parents of children who are planning surgery at Florida Hospital for Children, you can help ease your child’s fears with a pre-op tour of the hospital. 

This post is sponsored by Florida Hospital for Children.

At Florida Hospital for Children, child life specialists Nicole Baxa and Courtney Martin seek to help relax young patients by inviting them to tour the facilities, explore through medical play and learn about what to expect on the big day. 

Florida Children's Hospital Surgical

Every Wednesday patients, parents and siblings are invited take the tour with Nicole to ask questions and explore the facilities — all in an effort to help the patients be as comfortable as possible about their upcoming surgical procedure. Tours are split into older and younger kids to give families the best experience based on age. While on the tour patients visit an in-patient room, talk about what to expect and take a look at pictures of the surgical rooms. (Younger kids also explore more in-depth with medical play.) 

In addition to showing patients and parents what to expect, the child life specialists also coach parents on how best to support their kids. Providing information about how to talk to their children about the procedure and comfort items they can bring to the hospital, like their own special PJs, a beloved blanket and stuffed animal.

Kid Playing Doctor

On the day of surgery child life specialist Courtney is on hand to help relax patients (and parents) before surgery and tend to any of their personal needs or questions. 

In addition to the pre-op tours, Florida Hospital for Children also offers Picture Perfect, which is a program for children planning to have an MRI. During the program the children get a tour and a chance to see if they can hold perfectly still for the procedure on their own. 

Florida Hospital for Children

After talking to Nicole and Courtney, it is clear that the goal is of the programs designed by the child life specialists at Florida Hospital for Children are designed to help dispel any misconceptions children have about what to expect and to help alleviate fears. 

If you are planning a surgical procedure or MRI for your child at Florida Hospital for Children, ask your doctor about scheduling a tour or book one on Florida Hospital for Children’s website.

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4 thoughts on “Ease Surgery Fears With A Pre-Op Tour At Florida Hospital For Children”

  1. Great article you have shared. Ideas and tips are really informative and helpful. It is true that child life specialists are child development experts who work to ensure that life remains as normal as possible for children in health care settings and other challenging environments. The hospital experience can be very upsetting for children. Giving children information and ways of coping with stress helps them to be more in control of their experience. Child life specialists can help. Thanks for sharing this.

  2. This is a great article as an adult surgery is scary and for kid’s it must be twice as scary.
    This really makes you think of ways to talk to your child about it and make the setting relaxing

  3. I think having a pre op tour is great for the child and the parents. Surgery can be very scary. This would help make things a bit easier for all.


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