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Child & Adolescent Life Specialist - Adult Oncology Wake County

Regular Full Time Raleigh, North Carolina
Requisition Number: 228852
Duke Raleigh Hospital Duke Raleigh Hospital offers the latest in care and technology in a patient-friendly setting. It has been an important part of Duke Health since 1998 and has served Wake County for more than 35 years, employing more than 2,000 teammembers. The hospital provides 186 inpatient beds and a comprehensive array of services, including the Duke Raleigh Cancer Center, Duke Raleigh Orthopedic and Spine Center, cardiovascular services, neurosciences including the Duke Raleigh Skull Base and Cerebrovascular Center, advanced digestive care, disease management and prevention, wound healing, outpatient imaging, intensive and progressive care, pain clinic, same-day surgery, emergency department and community outreach and education programs. U.S.News & World Report ranked Duke Raleigh Hospital as high performing in orthopaedics and five adult procedures/conditions: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), heart failure, kidney failure, lung cancer surgery, and stroke.

This unique Child and Adolescent Life (hybrid) Position will focus on the emotional and developmental needs of children and teens in families when a parent is facing cancer.  The Specialist holds education sessions with families to support parents taking the lead in helping their children understand and talk about the cancer diagnosis, treatments, side effects and changes in their family life.  In addition, the Specialist leads a monthly support program called KidsCan! that allows children and teens to talk about their experiences coping with a parent’s cancer.  These programs are held virtually and in-person, with different themes and age-appropriate activities each month to foster relationships and learning amongst families.  The Specialist also leads a monthly ‘Parenting with Cancer’ Meetup to support parents with cancer and their caregivers and strategies to best support their children and family during cancer.

This position will be based in Wake county supporting all of our Cancer locations, and it is a hybrid role -  approximately 3 days/week onsite meeting and educating families, interacting with staff for referral needs, and planning and leading KidsCan! sessions and then ~2 days/week remote meetings with families via video conference.

General Description of the Job Class

Provide a variety of interventions for pediatric patients and families to promote coping skills, emotional health, and optimal development in the hospital setting.

Duties and Responsibilities of this Level

  • Assess the emotional and medical needs of assigned patient and families to determine the support needed during the medical experience. Formulate a plan of interaction based on assessment of patient and family and present plan to team members at psychosocial rounds and team meetings. Document all interactions in medical record charts. Provide play/recreational activities for assigned patients consistent with developmental needs in order to normalize the environment and facilitate assessments.
  • Utilize developmentally-appropriate methods for preparing children and families for diagnostic, treatment, and surgical procedures to optimize patients' understanding of their experience as well as their coping.
  • Participate in activities to support family-centered and comprehensive care. Maintain on-going communication with physicians, nurses, unit and clinical staff in order to ensure a coordinated approach to patient care. Address and attempt to limit the disruptive effects of illness, clinic visits, and hospitalization.
  • Provide in-service training to students, other staff, and professional groups in order to improve the practice of family-centered, developmentally-appropriate, and psychosocially-sound health care.
  • Participate in programs for professional training and development; in order to enhance job performance. Perform other administrative and related duties incidental to the work described herein.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Interviewing Skills Work independently with minimal supervision Strong interpersonal skills

Level Characteristics

Ability to work independently and proactively Team-oriented and flexible attitude Strong interpersonal and communication skills

Minimum Qualifications


Bachelor's Degree in Child Life, Counseling, Special Education, Recreation Therapy or directly related field. Due to professional exemption, equivalent experience cannot be substituted for bachelor's degree.


One year of experience working with hospitalized children or in an educational training program working with children preferred.

Additional Manager Preferences:

1. Must have completed an internship with a certified Child Life Specialist

2. Graduated with a bachelor's degree in: Child Development, Family Studies, Healthcare Consumer Sciences, or other related field of study

3. Must obtain Certified Child Life Specialist (CCLS) within 6 months of hire.

Degrees, Licensures, Certifications

Certified Child Life Specialist (CCLS) required within 6 months of hire.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

Interviewing Skills

Work independently with minimal supervision

Strong interpersonal skills

Distinguishing Characteristics of this Level

Ability to work independently and proactively

Team-oriented and flexible attitude

Strong interpersonal and communication skills

Duke is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employment opportunity without regard to an individual's age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

Duke aspires to create a community built on collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas—an exchange that is best when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. To achieve this exchange, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard. All members of our community have a responsibility to uphold these values.

Essential Physical Job Functions: Certain jobs at Duke University and Duke University Health System may include essentialjob functions that require specific physical and/or mental abilities. Additional information and provision for requests for reasonable accommodation will be provided by each hiring department.

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