Patient and Family Support Services
When treatment requires in-patient stays or frequent outpatient visits, life can feel like it is on hold for everyone. We offer patients and families support services that limit the disruptions a cancer or blood disorder diagnosis can cause and ease the patient’s transition back to their lives once treatment is complete.
Returning to school after a prolonged hospital stay can be a difficult and emotional experience. Our Back-to-School Program and School Liaison Program help our patients transition back to school by educating classmates, teachers, and school administration through in-person counseling and routine school visits. Learn more about our back-to-school programs.
Our resource centers, accessible from the treatment areas at Boston Children's Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, offer educational materials and activities for patients and families. Each resource center provides access to reference materials, support programs, and a variety of fun age-appropriate activities for patients and siblings. Learn more about our resource centers.
Our Sibling Program provides support to school-age and adolescent siblings of patients receiving extended care at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's. Recognizing that childhood cancer impacts the entire family, our program provides a range of events, activities, and emotional support services for siblings. Learn more about our Sibling Program.
Just for Teens provides activities and events tailored to the specific developmental and psychosocial needs of teens and young adults with cancer. The program gives teen patients creative outlets for self-expression and helps them meet other teens going through similar experiences. Activities include:
- Daily art activities, including jewelry-making, painting, mosaics, and much more
- An iTunes program that allows children to download songs for free
- A documentary program that helps teen patients create a documentary about their journey through cancer treatment. In addition to sharing thoughts and feelings in a safe and supportive environment, teens learn the basics of creating a documentary with photography, music, and video. They leave with their own documentary to share with friends and family.
- A pottery program that allows teens to decorate and glaze pieces of ceramic pottery while in the hospital or receiving treatment at the Jimmy Fund Clinic
- Laptops and wireless internet access in the Jimmy Fund Clinic to check email, chat with friends, play games, and watch movies
- FACES (Feeling Accepted, Confident, Empowered, and Strong), a social program for girls that shares beauty, skin care, and nutrition tips for during and after treatment
- FLASHES (Filming Life and Sharing Hope, Encouragement, and Strength), a social program for boys that involves film and photography projects
- Outside events including:
- Red Sox trip to spring training in Fort Myers, Florida
- Red Sox game at Fenway Park
- Boys' Weekend
- Girls' Weekend
For more information, call the Jimmy Fund Clinic at 617-632-5708 or the patient and family educator at Boston Children’s Hospital at 617-355-5645.
A childhood illness affects the whole family. Many parents find themselves overwhelmed and uncertain about how to navigate treatment and the changes it will bring. Parents Together helps parents of children treated at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center cope with treatment by providing resources and guidance related to areas like managing side effects and supporting siblings. Learn more about Parents Together on the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute website.
One of the many challenges facing families after treatment is caring for a child with a blood disorder or cancer at home. Our Hospital-to-Home program ensures a safe and seamless transition for children back into their home or community. Our Community Outreach nurse provides onsite visits for eligible patients to reinforce patient and family education, identify opportunities to improve care, and conduct a face-to-face handoff with a home-care agency nurse to provide for the specific needs related to the patient’s diagnosis, treatment, side effects, and other requirements. The program is available to all newly diagnosed pediatric oncology and post-transplant patients who live in Massachusetts within 90 miles of Boston.
Call our Community Outreach nurse at 617-355-0472 for more information.
Our Pediatric Resource Program provides resource assistance for eligible families whose children are receiving treatment at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center. The program helps families access concrete resources; identifies local, regional, and federal assistance programs; and serves as a patient and family advocate between Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s and the resource community. You may contact us at 617-632-5796, 617-632-6842, or 617-632-3365.
Serious illness can impact patients and families in a number of different ways, and the effects can be felt long after treatment ends. Our clinical support services for survivorship, fertility preservation, palliative care, cancer risk assessment, and psychosocial care are led by trained professionals and doctors and tailored specifically to the needs of our patients.
Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). All of our buildings are wheelchair accessible, and parking assistance is available. In addition, our cancer educational materials are available in large print and audiotape format.
Many of our patients are eligible to use THE RIDE, which provides transportation, including lift-equipped vans, for people with physical and mental disabilities that prevent them from using public transportation.
For more information, call the Dana-Farber ADA coordinator at 617-582-7100 or the Children’s Hospital ADA coordinator at 617-355-8917.
We offer spiritual consultation from a variety of perspectives, including interfaith, Islamic, Jewish, Protestant, and Roman Catholic faiths.
Learn about our spiritual support services.