Oregon Health & Science University

Relief Child Life Specialist

Job Locations US-OR-Portland
Requisition ID
Position Category
Allied Health
Position Type
Job Type
AFSCME union represented
Child Life Department
Salary Range
$29.68 - $40.15 per hour
M-F, variable day hours. No nights
Variable, typically 8-5pm
HR Mission
Drug Testable

Department Overview

Come work at Oregon's #1 ranked hospital!

OHSU is more than Oregon's only comprehensive academic health center. It’s an entire community of people dedicated to a single cause. Each of us are here to improve the health and well-being of people in Oregon, and beyond. Our core values of quality, service, transparency and diversity are essential in what we do, but ultimately important because of why we are here. We are here to serve. We are here to innovate. We are here to lead. We are looking forward to the dynamic impact you will make by joining OHSU.


The Child Life Specialist provides support to both outpatient and inpatient areas of the hospital. The CLS will support patients with acute and chronic illnesses to promote their healthy growth and development, reduce anxiety and trauma and aid focusing on emotional adjustment to hospitalization.


This relief position supports the current CL staff in providing coverage for sick and vacation.

Function/Duties of Position

1.  Clinical Responsibilities

  • Maintains and supports the philosophy of family centered care by helping the patients and families cope with the hospital experience.
  • Assesses and documents the emotional and psychosocial developmental needs, action and follow-up plan written in the patient’s record
  • Promotes coping with the hospital experience through expression of feelings in developmentally age appropriate, therapeutic activities.
  • Provides preoperative teaching, post op support and pre-op tours.
  • Provides emotional support to patient and family during medical/nursing procedures.
  • Provides child development expertise in the development of educational material for patients and families.
  • Participates in care conferences held to assess patient needs and receives suggestions for intervention from other care conference members.
  • Identifies needs of all children incorporating developmental level, mobility, chronicity of illness and psychosocial factors to facilitate activities fostering mastery of healthcare experiences.
  • Adapts play materials to meet individual needs.
  • Explains at the child’s level of understanding, the sequence, nature, and reason for medical procedures and routines; serves as a supportive non-medical person during medical procedures.
  • Promotes positive guest relations with the staff, patients, volunteers and visitors
  • Assists in training and supervision of volunteers to promote positive interactions for patients and families with volunteers.
  • Provides emotional, intellectual and social support for siblings of patient.
  • Provides grief support for families

2.  Promotes the Child Life professional and program through education and role modeling.

  • Participates in associations related to Child Life and maintains knowledge on current trends in Child Life.
  • Shares child development knowledge and communication skills with staff and providers as opportunities arise.
  • Orients patient care staff, volunteers and students to the needs of hospitalized children and adolescents.
  • Acts as a resource person for staff in identifying patient and family needs under stress and crisis.
  • Participates as a member on an organizational, multidisciplinary committee as possible
  • Role models professional competence and respectful communications.
  • Commits to teamwork in the Child Life Program through positive communication and collaboration.
  • Assists in preparation and dissemination of information representing the hospital and Child Life Program to community groups, organizations and the news media.   

    3.  Administrative Responsibilities

  • Maintains necessary medical play supplies and playrooms in good working order.
  • Responds to requests and donations of community, accepts donations brought to DCH.
  • Maintains a supply of books/pamphlets for grief support, general information regarding hospitalization of children and other materials as patient needs dictate.
  • Processes donations including donor relations, organization, storage and/or distribution of donations.
  • Uses fiscal stewardship in requesting and ordering program materials.
  • Maintains accurate pager status, answers calls and emails promptly.
  • Supports DCH Foundation special events and requests as requested.
  • Coordinates and attends Child Life Program special events and/or entertainment activities for patients and families. 


Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree in a Child Development, Early Childhood Education, Recreational Therapy, Special Education, or a closely related field and completion of a minimum of 480 hours in a Child Life internship. Child Life Certification within one year of hire date.
  • Preference will be given to applicants with hospital experience or training, Child Life Specialist certification, and proficiency in Spanish.


Additional Details

  • This position is benefits eligible after 6 months of consistent coverage. 
  • Flexible schedule and allows for up to 30 hours/week of coverage for CLS both inpatient and outpatient setting.

All are welcome

Oregon Health & Science University values a diverse and culturally competent workforce. We are proud of our commitment to being an equal opportunity, affirmative action organization that does not discriminate against applicants on the basis of any protected class status, including disability status and protected veteran status. Individuals with diverse backgrounds and those who promote diversity and a culture of inclusion are encouraged to apply. To request reasonable accommodation contact the Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Department at 503-494-5148 or aaeo@ohsu.edu.

As an organization devoted to the health and well-being of people in Oregon and beyond, OHSU requires its employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


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