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December 24, 1960

Mother Bank in a Children's Hospital

Author Affiliations


Attending Psychiatrist; Director, Child Guidance Clinic (Dr. Fineberg). Fellow in Child Guidance (Dr. Jones), Chldren's Memorial Hospital.

JAMA. 1960;174(17):2153-2154. doi:10.1001/jama.1960.63030170007013a

WE WISH to describe the use of continuous, mothering care for hospitalized children. This need has been recognized theoretically as well as clinically by all people concerned with the health and welfare of children. The mother knows her child needs her. The pediatrician has long prescribed tender loving care. The frustration of the overworked pediatric nurse who can only give minimal routine attention to her small charges is apparent to those who work in the pediatric wards.

All this is known, yet supplying the need has posed a difficult problem. Additional nursing service is not only costly, but not available. Volunteer programs have not been successful because of the difficulty in obtaining volunteers who will give more than one day at a time. The use of the volunteer in the role of a mother surrogate for a needy infant has not been employed, to our knowledge.

The stimulus for embarking

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