9th July 2012 – New children’s play area for outpatients department
Children who come to the adult outpatient department at Airedale Hospital now have a new play area to keep them amused while they wait.
The new indoor play area in the general outpatient’s department means that children coming to appointments with their parents or carers or who have appointments themselves to access specialist equipment for ear or eye assessments, now have something to take their minds off their visit.
Eileen Proud, chairman of the Friends of Airedale Hospital, says: “As the appointments in general outpatients are mainly for adults, this meant that the waiting area was not very child friendly and simply had magazines and a few children’s books for any young people who came with their families for appointments.
“When staff asked us if we would be able to help by providing an area specifically for children, with books and toys, we were happy to oblige.”
After the equipment was delivered, the new brightly decorated play area took just a couple of weeks to complete. Parents must still supervise their children while they are playing with the toys and games, reading books or watching television.
Brenda Emsley, senior sister in the outpatients department at Airedale Hospital, says: “Keeping children amused while they wait means the hospital visit is less stressful for everyone. Whether the appointment is for a child or their parent or carer, having a safe, designated play area for children gives them something else to focus on and helps reduce anxieties about the hospital visit for the whole family.”
The children’s play area is just one of the ways the Friends of Airedale have helped improve facilities for patients and visitors to Airedale Hospital over the last 12 months.
The charity donated equipment worth over £120,000 during 2011/12. Other significant items donated last year included two mobile operating tables, nine syringe pumps for the anaesthetic department, a bladder scanner and a variety of wheelchairs, armchairs and reclining chairs as well as specialist pressure reduction cushions for patients.