Staff at The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust (TRFT) have been given the tools to further help put youngsters at ease during treatment. They took part in an activity packed day recently to help them learn how to work better with children to keep them calm and relaxed whilst doctors and nurses carry out medical procedures.
The day, organised by TRFT’s learning and development service, with support from NHS Rotherham, helped 15 staff from departments including accident and emergency, x-ray, dermatology, photopheresis, day surgery and outpatients to learn skills which enables medics to carry out procedures quickly and efficiently so children get the best results from their treatment.
Some of the ideas explored on the day included calming methods and distraction techniques, for example, playing with bubbles. The bubble bottle acts as a distraction, whilst the bubbles provide a bit of fun and also help to calm the child as the blowing action helps them to control their breathing. Other areas covered included child development and the impact a child with a long term health conditions has on siblings and families.
Mary Dougan, from TRFT’s learning and development department, who helped to organise the day and has a background in adult nursing, commented: “Many of the staff who attended the day have regular contact with children but have had none or little formal training on how to deal with Trust staff mark Paediatric Awareness Day 2011 them.
“The day provided some simple techniques and background information to enable staff to get the most out of their work with youngsters, reduce distress for the child and carry out their tasks quickly and efficiently.” It also incorporated talks from experts in the paediatric field such as child psychologists, heath visitors who covered areas such as child development and school nurses who spoke about parental anxieties and the educational effects for a child with a long term illness. As well as talks from professionals, the day encouraged attendees to network and share ideas which helped to further improve links between the different services.