Clinics and Departments

Children's - Minneapolis Services

Children's - Minneapolis is attached via tunnel to Abbott-Northwestern Hospital. Families are welcome to take advantage of many of the services offered at Abbott-Northwestern as well.

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The Children's - Minneapolis Cafeteria (Starz Café) serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner (see this week’s menu). Take-out food is available. A complimentary breakfast of snacks for families is also available in the Family Resource Center Monday – Friday beginning at 7 a.m. and Saturday and Sunday beginning at 8:30 a.m. Snacks include granola bars, oatmeal packets, raisins, coffee, tea, hot cider, and cocoa. See Eating and Lodging.

The chapel is located on first floor and is available to persons of all faiths. Worship services are offered at the chapel at Abbott Northwestern Hospital. Information about these services are posted in Children's chapel. For more information about chaplaincy services (612) 813-6253 or ask the nursing staff to page the unit chaplain.

Child life specialists
We work hard to make every child's hospital experience a positive one by enhancing their understanding and minimizing the stress children may feel during a hospital stay. This is crucial to a child's emotional health, and can affect a child's physical well-being. Child life specialists are trained in child development and specialize in working with children in medical settings. Using special techniques and resources, the specialists prepare children for medical procedures and surgery. Age-appropriate explanations help patients understand what will happen and give them time to adjust and ask questions. (more on Child life services)

Dietitians specialized in pediatric nutrition are available for consultation on special nutritional needs such as modified diets and formula, and other supplemental feedings. A request for referral needs to be made by your child's nurse or physician.

Discharge planners
Before your child is ready to go home, discharge planners will help coordinate the health care needs your child will require at home. Talk to your child's nurse to arrange a meeting with a discharge planner.

E-mail for patients at Children's
Patients may receive e-mail get well messages over the Internet. Using your normal e-mail process, address your message to [email protected]. Put the patient's name, hospital (Minneapolis or St. Paul), and room number (if known) on the subject line. A printed message will be delivered to the patient's room. Delivery will be once a day, Monday through Friday. To protect patient confidentiality, we will not confirm that e-mail has been delivered or whether a patient is actually in one of our hospitals. Messages are undeliverable to discharged patients.

Family lounges
Family lounges are located on or near each unit. Free coffee and tea is available in each lounge. Ask your child's nurse where the washer and dryer are located. In addition to a bed in the room where your child stays, there are separate sleeping accommodations available near the lounges.

Family Relations Liaison
They can help you when you have concerns or comments about your child's care. Contact them at 612-813-7393.

Family Resource Center
The Cargill Family Resource Center, 612-813-6816, located on the second floor of the hospital, provides a warm, quiet place for families to read, relax, view videos, connect with other families, or search for resources on the internet. It is a community-wide resource available to families who have children in the hospital, outpatient families and those visiting Children's. A complimentary breakfast of snacks for families is also available in the Family Resource Center Monday – Friday beginning at 7 a.m. and Saturday and Sunday beginning at 8:30 a.m. Snacks include granola bars, oatmeal packets, raisins, coffee, tea, hot cider, and cocoa.

Gift shops
The Storybook Gift Shop, located in the second floor skyway, sells toys, balloons, books, cards, gifts, and personal items. All profits are donated to programs and services at Children's. Abbott Northwestern Hospital also has a gift shop which is located in the hospital's lobby.

Storybook Gift Shop hours:

  • 9:30 a.m. - 7 p.m., Monday - Thursday
  • 9:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Friday
  • 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Saturday
  • noon - 4 p.m.
  • For phone orders or other information, call (612) 813-6855.

Health plan coverage confirmation
Children's Hospitals and Clinics has contracts with all major health maintenance organizations, preferred provider organizations, and insurance companies. Children's also accepts patients covered by medical assistance plans from Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Call your health plan to confirm coverage for a visit to Children's.

Hospital room features for children
Each room has a VCR, television, and radio. Videos are available for check-out. A computer on a rolling cart, stocked with CD-ROM games, can also be brought into your child's room. Many rooms feature built-in beds for a parent to sleep in.

Internet access
To protect patients and their families, it is Children's policy to block content and Web sites that may affect their safety and security. This includes Web sites with obscene or inappropriate content, and access to social networking sites that may expose children to Internet users who have harmful intentions. Read more.

Language and sign language interpreters are available for you and your child at no charge. Let the nurse know if you or your child needs an interpreter to help understand instructions and procedures.

The Betty Malkerson Children's Library, located on the 6th floor, offers computers, stories on CD, a wide selection of books and magazines, as well as resource materials for children and teenagers. Programs include daily bookwagon rounds, storytimes, games, and Animal Ambassadors Reading Fun. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 12 noon, and 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. You may call us at (612) 813-6265.


At Children's - Minneapolis, we offer patients room service dining - a healthy way to make sure kids eat what they want, when they want it. Parents, or the nursing staff if families are not available, help children select and call in their food choices. The meal then arrives within 45 minutes.

Medical Records

Copies of patient medical records are available from our Release of Information Department. You must fill out a Release of Information form. Processing usually takes four or five working days. See Requesting Medical Records for more information. Also, learn more about patient, parent, and legal guardian access to medical records.

Overnight accommodations
Contact the Cargill Family Resource Center (612) 813-6816 for information about nearby hotels and other accommodations that offer special medical rates for patient families. 0r see Eating and Lodging . The center is located on the 2nd floor, behind the Welcome Center.

Outdoor play areas
A second floor deck features a large play structure, basketball court, and picnic tables. The deck can be accessed through the Sibling Play Area or the Family Resource Center.

Child life specialists maintain playrooms, full of toys, colorful play structures, art supplies, and games, on each floor of the hospital. Playrooms are the center of activities, including cooking, movie days, visits from zoo animals, and bingo. Special efforts are also made to accommodate children who need to stay in their rooms. Some items for teens include a pool table and video games.

School program
Children who are away from school 15 consecutive school days or longer can continue their studies with a teacher from the Minneapolis public school system. Sessions are limited to one 50-minute session per day. You will be asked to sign an authorization form to permit your child to participate in the school program. Contact one of our social workers to communicate your child's needs to the hospital-based school teacher.

Sibling play area
If you would like to spend time alone with your child who is in the hospital, your other children (over age two) may stay in the sibling play area on second floor at Children's - Minneapolis. The hours for the sibling play area are posted on its door or can be obtained by calling the information center at 612-813-7051.

Starbright World computer system
Starbright World, a program of the Starbright Foundation, is a secure private online computer network connecting children from hospitals across the nation. Using Starbright World, children can videoconference, email and chat with other children who are hospitalized with similar illnesses. This "virtual playground", as Starbright's chairman Steven Spielberg puts it, is "a place that can help children recapture the joy of being a kid."

Special programs
Each week is packed with special programs planned by child life specialists. Patients can work with a master gardener to plant and care for seedlings, spend time with a puppy brought to visit by a Humane Society volunteer, see performances by singing groups, or receive visits from celebrities. Check with the child life specialist on your floor to find out the week's schedule.

Support Groups
Mental health professionals, chaplains, nurses, and social workers provide support and therapy groups for children, adolescents, and parents. See support groups for a partial list or call the Family Resource Center at 612-813-6816.

Volunteers provide many services including assisting the nursing and child life staffs on nursing units, in the clinic and in the emergency department; delivering flowers; and managing the toy and library carts. See volunteers for more information.

Web pages for patients
Sometimes parents have relatives and friends all over the world who are concerned about a child in the hospital. At, parents can build a web page for their child and post daily updates on the child's condition. A computer is available for parents on the second floor in the Family Resource Center.