Clowning in hospitals is no jokeBMJ 1999; 319 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.319.7212.792a (Published 18 September 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;319:792
- Caroline Simonds, founder and artistic director (email@example.com)
- Le Rire Médecin, Paris
The 28 members of Le Rire Médecin (Laughing Doctors) have worked closely with hospital medical staff in France since 1991. Twice a week the group holds specially conceived shows for children and their families in paediatric wards in eight hospitals—six in Paris. Each year it performs for more than 30 000 children, a similar number of parents, and more than 60 000 medical personnel.
The group fills a gap left by other hospital activities carried out by teachers and volunteer workers and provides a vital part of the effort to humanise the care of children.
To our knowledge the only other groups which perform a similar function are The Big Apple Circus Clown Unit in New York, the Doutores da Alegeria in Brazil, and Die Clownen Doctors in Germany.
The group fills …