The Dream Doctors Project
Over 10 years ago (2002) the Dream Doctors project was established in Israel based on the then revolutionary concept that not only should medical clowns be integral members of the health care team, they should also be trained to function in a variety of medical settings, coordinated and integrated with the physicians to facilitate care of the patient.
In simple terms, the new model of medical clowning is “beyond humor”, as the clown is trained to serve in a role that is both diagnostic and therapeutic, comparable to that of other trained health care paraprofessionals. As such, in contrast to the entertainment model, in the frame of the Israeli therapeutic Dream Doctor project, the clown joins the physicians on their daily rounds, receives his/her work plan based on the medically set priorities of the department, and adjusts his/her clowning techniques to be in line with the realities of the specific patient’s condition and need.
We began with three clowns working at Hadassah University Hospital - Ein Kerem and since then we are constantly expanding to new hospitals and new departments.
Currently (2015) we have over 110 medical clowns in 29 hospitals, treating over 180,000 children annually.
Our Values and Goals
The program is based on three central principles:
1. The medical clown focuses on the child’s well-being and the clown’s efforts are all aimed at alleviating the experience of the medical treatments and hospitalization.
2. The medical clowns work in conjunction with the medical team, and not as a separate entity.
3. We recruit the most professional clowns, and provide them with professional support at the highest academic standard.
In recent years an increasing number of studies have been published showing the benefit of medical clowning in Israel and around the world. One such study was performed at Ichilov Medical Center (2012) and found that the presence of a Dream Doctor clown diminished pain and anxiety during an emergency room procedure. Other studies from Meir Medical Center, Shaare Zedek, Poriah and more also show the benefit of medical clowns.
Our Future Dreams
Our vision is to reach any suffering child, any time, any place.
• Increase clowning hours in hospitals to reach more children
• Promote more academic research to establish the benefits of medical clowning
• Promote medical clowning as a recognized Para-medical profession
Dream Doctors Trauma Care
Dream Doctors are active during crises, national emergencies and natural disasters throughout the world, attempting to reach the injured population to prevent the development of post-trauma. A special team of…
Dream Doctors Project
The unique Dream Doctors project integrates professional medical clowning into the medical services provided at Israeli hospitals. Established in 2002, Dream Doctors now operates at 29 hospitals throughout the country,…
Dream Doctors promote academic research to further understand and establish the benefits of medical clowning. Since the international conference we held near Jerusalem in 2011, we supported 22 academic studies…
Hurricane Irma Relief
Thanks to our incredible donors, two Dream Doctors, therapeutic medical clowns, are in Texas helping communities affected by Hurricane Harvey. Smadar Harpak and Penny Hanuka have been in hospitals, shelters, schools and…
Dream Doctors fly to Nepal to assist at the Israeli field hospital5 Dream Doctors flew out to Nepal to work with the patients of the Israeli field hospital near Katmandu.…
The Dream Doctors Project
Organization Id: 580515120
Established in: 2002
Israel and disaster zones around the world