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Profession: Child Life Therapist

Qualification and registration requirements

The required qualification for Child Life Therapists across Australia is a degree such as the Bachelor of Early Childhood, Primary Teaching or a related field that includes two years study in child development, deemed equivalent by the employer.

What is a Child Life Therapist?

Child Life Therapy (formerly referred to as Play Therapy) aims to minimise stress, normalise the hospital setting and help children cope positively with their healthcare experience. Child Life Therapists use their educational framework to assess the needs of babies, children and adolescents, then, using a family centred focus are able to provide an appropriate program according to the child's developmental needs. Child Life Therapists work in multidisciplinary teams to address the emotional, developmental and cultural needs of each child and their family.

In addition, Child Life Therapists have an important role in providing education and support to all staff in regards to the specific needs of children in the health care context.

What does a Child Life Therapist do?

The Therapists use procedure education, medical play, and facilitate distraction and coping, as well as using developmentally appropriate play and self-expression activites.

Related links

For information on how to gain recognition of Allied Health qualifications obtained overseas, please contact the relevant professional association as per web links above.