COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – Neurologists, radiologists and oncologists are just some of the incredible professionals that save lives and fill our hospitals, but there’s another healthcare professional that is just as important, especially for children patients: Humorologists.
Humorologists are doctors of laughter. Instead of performing tests, giving treatments, or dealing out diagnoses, these professionals are trained to raise spirits, give support, and create laughs in what most would consider a serious environment.
“We come in and act foolish, we come in bump into walls, bump into each other,” said Humorologist, Ron Anglin”Dr. Tiny”. “We always are there reading the room to see what can we do to help that child feel better.”
Clowns like Dr. Tiny head to hospital rooms in pairs at Piedmont Columbus Regional where they’re tasked with playing music, juggling, creating bubbles and telling jokes all in the hopes to get a child and their families to breath and forget where they are for just one second even during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“Without the mask on we would do a lot of soap bubble tricks. Can’t do that right now, can’t play a harmonica with a mask, but I have a little bubble wand 99 cents at Walmart,” said. Dr. Tiny. “So I can put bubbles in the air and we can squeak the bubbles, we can catch bubbles, we can do tricks with them and distract the child.”
And these Doctors are trained professionals Dr. Tiny shared. They know how to read a room, get permission and how to deliver laughter and fun while keeping everyone safe.
“We are trained to be very aware of our environment,” said Dr.Tiny. “Also to be hygiene aware. We scrub between floors, we clean our hands with the alcohol between rooms, even in the NICU bays. We don’t walk to the next bay without cleaning our hands.”
The Humorologist do more than provide laughs, support and relief for patients, families and hospital staff. They empower.
“What’s really cool about what we do is we’re the only ones in the hospital a kid can say no to,” said Dr. Tiny. “They can’t tell a nurse or the doctor don’t come in my room right now, but if they need to tell us no, not right now they can.”
The Clowns at Piedmont Columbus Regional are a part of Humorology Atlanta or “Ha!” for short.
The work was originally started over 30 years ago by the Big Apple Circus Clown Care and when they went out of business in 2016 that is when they formed Ha! To continue the work.