Patients, staff and members of the public celebrated the achievements of nurses at Southampton Children’s Hospital with a series of awareness activities this week.
Among the events held were simulations and demonstrations from the paediatric intensive care unit, physiotherapy, plastering and research teams, as well as nursing staff from a range of specialties on hand to discuss their work.
Visitors also had the chance to find out more about the children’s emergency and trauma department fundraising appeal and show their support through various competitions, cake sales and cream teas.
Alongside the educational and awareness activities, the week included a fun-packed programme which gave people the chance to test their steady hand skills on a giant game of Operation and nurses participated in fancy dress contests.
There was also an opportunity for potential new paediatric nursing recruits to find out about more about opportunities with the surgical, gastroenterology, nephrology, oncology, cardiology and orthopaedic teams.
Children’s nursing week is an initiative set-up by University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust to recognise the work, skills and expertise of more than 400 nurses across Southampton Children’s Hospital.
“Our children’s nurses are absolutely amazing – they all strive to ensure our young patients receive the highest level of care every day and deliver it with compassion, kindness and commitment,” said Kate Pye, divisional head of nursing for women and children at UHS.
“We’ve introduced children’s nursing week to highlight and showcase the excellence in children’s nursing practice here in Southampton and it really has given everyone huge enjoyment and satisfaction.”
Half the proceeds from the week’s fundraising events will go towards Southampton Children’s Hospital Charity – part of Southampton Hospital Charity – and The Murray Parish Trust’s children’s emergency and trauma department appeal, with the other half set aside for a local education fund for nurses’ professional development.
The £4.8 million project will see the development of a state-of-the-art facility which is expected to treat more than 30,000 youngsters every year from across Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Dorset, Devon, Wiltshire, Berkshire, West Sussex, Channel Islands and Oxfordshire.
The appeal recently reached the £1 million milestone (April) but has a further £1 million to go before work on the build can commence. The government will match fund a further £2 million and the remaining £800,000 has been allocated by UHS.
Richard Corden, director of Southampton Hospital Charity, said: “We can’t thank hospital staff enough for their fundraising efforts and what better way to engage people in the cause than to have our fantastic nursing workforce championing the project.
“The new children’s emergency department will ensure the facilities in this area are transformed so they are in keeping with the exceptionally high standards of clinical care delivered by staff every day.”