Frequently Asked Questions - Child Life

Can I stay overnight in the hospital with my child?

We make sure parents and family are involved in every step of their child's treatment. One or two parents or caregivers are encouraged to stay in the room with their child on the Acute Care Units and Progressive Care Units. Since siblings are unable to spend the night at the hospital, it may be best for you to arrange for a family member or friend to care for your other children. A sleep couch and recliner are available in each patient room. Your child’s nurse will provide you with blankets and pillows and items you need to shower daily. 

Parents of patients in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Nursery should check with a nurse regarding policies for overnight visitors.

Lodging options

We have a list of nearby places to stay. Many hotels and motels offer discounts to patient families, so make sure to ask when you make your reservation.

Ronald McDonald House

The Ronald McDonald House offers housing for families of critically ill children. A hospital referral is required. Please call Social Services at 859-323-5501 or Pastoral Care at 859-323-5301 for more information. 

Patients or families of patients who are 18 or younger may use the Ronald McDonald House. Only one room is available per family and a minimal nightly donation is requested. 

Location: 550 Cooper Drive
Phone: 859-268-0757 or 859-268-1651

What dining options are available?

Find more information on our dining resources.

Do you have internet access?

To log onto our free public wireless, choose the “UK-Guest” internet connection. Once registered, your access will be good for five days.

This is an unsecured public network. Please protect your private information when using this network. Kentucky Children’s Hospital is not responsible for any electronic information that is lost or stolen using the public network.

Should I bring my child’s medication?

DO NOT bring your child's medications with you unless your doctor tells you to. DO bring a list of your child's medications with doses and times.

Our nurses and pharmacists will make sure your child gets the right medicine at the right time. Please let us know if your child has a special way to take medicine.

Will my child be able to play in the hospital?

Yes! We know play is an essential part of childhood and helps your child feel better about being in the hospital. Our Child Life Program provides play and activities for infants, children and teens in the hospital. 

We have several play areas and also offer activities in patient rooms. Activities include games, art, books, video games, therapy dogs and special visitors.

You and your child will also have access to Get Well Network, an interactive patient and family experience available through the TV console. Through this system, information about your child’s illness, treatment plan and medicine is available at bedside, along with entertainment, games, hospital information and interaction with the staff. Ask a member of your health care team for more information.

If your child is in isolation, please contact a child life specialist so we can provide activities in your child’s room.

How do I talk to my child about staying in the hospital?

How do I help my child cope with hospitalization?

We have tips for helping your hospitalized child, including information for parents of infants, toddlers, preschoolers, school-age children and teens.

What can I do to care for myself while my child is in the hospital?

Can brothers and sisters visit the hospital?

One of the most important factors in a child’s recovery is being connect with family and friends. Kentucky Children’s Hospital inpatient units welcome visits from siblings during normal visiting hours, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

Sibling visits to the Pediatric Intensive Care, Cardiac Intensive Care and Neonatal Intensive Care units may require permission from the medical team for children under 14. Please check with your medical team or nursing staff regarding children visiting the units.

If your other children are fearful of visiting the hospital, please seek guidance from one of our child life specialists on how to support your other children during a hospital visit.  

During flu and respiratory season, visitation may be restricted to protect the patients in our care. Please be aware that visitation may also be restricted during times of pandemic or increased community infections.

My other children are having difficulty. How do I help them?

Check out our tips on giving your kids extra support and comfort.

Contact the Child Life Program

For more assistance, please contact our Child Life office at 859-323-6551 or email us.