Crowds gathered on the fourth floor of Tauranga Hospital today to recognise the efforts of local businesses and charities in producing the new and improved children’s ward.
The new ward featuring top quality equipment and resources including a new playroom officially opened three weeks ago but was today recognised with a visit from Children’s Commissioner Russell Wills.
Brodie Hunter, 11, reads with Russell Wills. Photo: Savannah Lee.
“I’d be proud to work in a place like this, you can see that children’s voices have informed it; it looks like place children would have good time in,” says Russell.
“It’s well designed, it’s airy and it’s light. I think it’s fantastic.
“You can also see how the clinicians and managers have worked together.”
The Hawkes Bay paediatrician says for children like 3-year-old Jacob Foster, who is staying in the children’s ward for four weeks, new aspects such as the indoor-outdoor playroom are imperative.
“Imagine a children’s ward without that.”
Russell Wills plays with Jacob Foster in the new children’s playroom. Photo: Savannah Lee.
Other improvements include a new isolation room enabling children and their family to have privacy and still get access to the most up to date clinical monitoring systems.
Today was Russell’s first time visiting Tauranga Hospital and he was impressed. “I’m going to take home some ideas for Hawkes Bay.”
Doreen Birchfield has been volunteering in Tauranga Hospital for 17 years and says the new ward is fantastic.
She is especially pleased with the playroom, which offers indoor -outdoor flow.
“We never had an area outside, and it was so hot.
She says the new room is larger than the old one, which is perfect for visiting families.
“Before, if you got one family, and they brought their nanas and granddads, it would be full.”