New Child Health Facilities At Chch Hospital Officially Opening Monday
On Monday (15 November) the new $2m paediatric facilities at Christchurch hospital will be officially opened by the Chair of the CDHB Board, Syd Bradley.
The new facilities will add weight to the paediatrics department’s reputation as the South Island centre for excellence in childcare.
The department which has three paediatric surgeons, 11 specialist paediatricians and four neonatologists as well as a high ratio of specialist nurses to the number of infants and children in its care, is the only tertiary centre for paediatric surgery, neurology, oncology, haematology and burns in the South Island.
The new facilities have grouped all child-related treatments in one area including the high dependency unit and the oncology unit. Having everything close at hand is considered a real bonus by all staff, says the Chair of Service for Paediatrics, Professor Spenser Beasley.
‘The children’s oncology centre (Choc) is now able to provide a full service and we have three fully equipped ensuite rooms which means we no longer need to send children to the Bone Marrow Unit in the hospital. We have the capacity to provide the best treatment right here,’ he said.
‘Our high dependency unit (HDU) has also been improved and its capacity increased which means that children with respiratory illnesses can be fully supported within the paediatric department. Our clinical investigations unit is also better equipped and more comfortable for children.’
Professor Beasley said the comfort of children and their parents was an important component of the paediatrics department.
‘We now have a proper facility for children and their parents. We now have side rooms for children and their parents who are feeling stressed and under pressure. We used to have one shower for up to 80 adults. Now we have three. We have improved storage facilities for equipment including a larger space for medications which makes it safer.’
Play areas have also been increased in size with dividers for children under and over two years of age. Well designed play space was an important component of the department, Professor Bealsey said. It was viewed as therapeutic intervention especially for children who were suffering from stress.
‘And, we have an increased number of consulting rooms which allows us to have multidisciplinary family meetings.’
The new facilities also provide for improved offices for clinicians, nurse educators, outreach nurses and the staff within the department. The department’s refurbishment was a real ‘gain’ for everyone, he said.