The definition of the medical clown's role with adult patients

Rachel Scheyer, Orit Nuttman-Shwartz, Herzel Ziyoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


In recent years, the healthcare system has grown increasingly aware of the need to develop and adopt new models and intervention methods aimed at improving patients' quality of life. As part of this perception, medical clowns have been integrated into hospitals, primarily in work with children. Recently, there have been attempts to integrate clowns into work with adult patients in emergency rooms, but this intervention method has not yet been systematically implemented and studied. This article describes and examines the definition of the medical clown's role as an intervention strategy with adult outpatients suffering from chronic and life-threatening illnesses. The study is qualitative and based on a content analysis of the documentation of the work of two medical clowns over two years. The dominant theme arising from this analysis involves the definition of the clown's role within the medical space of the hospital and includes perspectives on his integration into the hospital's multidisciplinary medical staff and his impact on the staff and on patients and their families. The findings indicate that, from the clowns' point of view, integrated medical clowns as part of the medical team, would contribute to the functioning of both patients and staff. This is in accord with additional studies conducted recently in Medical Centers around the world. Since this is a pioneering study, there is room to further probe and research the medical clown's contribution to assisting and improving patients' and staff's quality of life and to develop ways of increasing his integration and professionalism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-29
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • Intervention method
  • Medical clowns
  • Multidisciplinary medical staff
  • Quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (all)


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