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Monkeying about for play week

Next week is National Play in Hospital Week, and there’s a range of fun activities planned for visitors to Poole Hospital to take part in.

Events will be running on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (9-11 October) in the dome area, led by Holly Barnes, hospital play specialist, from 10.30am-2.30pm each day.

There’s a chance for youngsters to bring in their unwell teddy bears to be diagnosed at a teddy bear clinic on Thursday. Children will be given the chance to play the role of a doctor and learn about a range of medical procedures.

Woolen worry pets, used to encourage children to share concerns, will be available to take home on Wednesday to anyone with a worry to share.

holly barnes play specialistTuesday and Thursday see visits from the Caring Canines charity, whose specially selected pooches visit youngsters, as well as adult patients, in hospital who are feeling paw-ly.

Other services, for example children’s therapy, will also be on hand to explain how they use play to make hospital visits more comfortable.

And throughout the week there’s a chance to name ‘Monkey’, pictured with Holly, and who is a new member of the play specialist team.

“Coming into hospital can be daunting for patients of any age,” said Holly. “But for children, it can create a lot of anxiety around what will happen to them.

“We use techniques like distraction and play to help younger patients understand what is happening, and to encourage them to talk about any fears or concerns they may have.

“It’s great to be able to raise awareness of the role and the benefits it can bring to children in hospital.”

ENDS.

Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Longfleet Road, Poole, Dorset BH15 2JB. Tel: 01202 665511

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