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On the ward

Your child will be cared for by a team that includes doctors, nurses and play specialists. All staff wear name badges and will introduce themselves to you. We also have staff photo boards on display.

If you have any special needs or cultural requirements, please tell a member of staff. The hospital has an interpreter service for anyone who has difficulty speaking English or anyone who is deaf.

Ward routine
Handover from night staff to day staff 7.45am to 8.15am
Play activities start 8.30am
Ward rounds with consultants and/or other senior medical staff 9am or earlier
Hospital school 9am

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Supper

  • 7.45am to 8.15am
  • 12pm
  • 5pm
  • 8pm
If your child needs a special diet, we will make every effort to provide this.

Patients should only eat food provided by hospital staff. Your child should not eat food from other sources such as hospital canteens, shops or restaurants.

Handover from day staff to night staff 8pm
Allocation of sleeping accommodation for parents staying overnight 8pm

Play activities
Each ward has a play specialist who provides games and activities. The play specialist is also available to assist with distraction and emotional support during clinical procedures.

School is available during term time. Each ward has a teacher. Children will be provided with school work and activities at the bedside or will be encouraged to go to the school room when they feel well enough.

Health and safety

The safety of your child is our primary concern

  • Children are not permitted in the kitchen at any time.
  • Please keep the area around your child’s bed as tidy as possible. Use the locker provided for storage.

Supervising other children 
We realise that children enjoy seeing their brothers and sisters. However, parents or carers are responsible for the safety of children who are visiting.

Please ensure you know where all your children are while in hospital. Do not allow young children to disturb patients who are ill.

Security issues
Parents and visitors must enter and leave the Children’s Hospital through the main entrance. No other entrances or exits can be used.

The front doors are closed between 9.30pm and 7am. Outside these times, the hospital can be accessed by the doors in the Emergency Department.

Children must not leave the ward on their own. Young people may leave the ward with an adult.

Please tell a nurse when you are leaving your child on their own. Do not take your child out of the ward unless a member of nursing staff gives permission and knows where you are going. Keeping us informed will avoid a security alert.

Teaching and research

The Children’s Hospital is a teaching hospital. Students from all medical and health professions visit the wards regularly. They work under the direction of qualified members of staff and your cooperation in helping them is appreciated.

If you are unhappy with students being involved in any aspect of your child’s care, please tell a member of staff.

Research to improve patient care is an important part of our work. However, no clinical research is carried out unless the appropriate consent has been given.

The Research Office is responsible for managing all research that involves patients or staff across the Trust. This includes:

  • trials of new medicines or devices
  • studies to improve understanding of disease biology
  • studies to improve patients’ experience of care within the Trust

All Trust research is reviewed and approved by an independent research ethics committee. It is conducted in line with national guidelines from regulatory bodies.


Please remember that information about other children and their illnesses is private. Please do not ask a member of staff for information about another child. All staff regard patient information as confidential.

Information about your child is only given to you as the child’s parent or guardian. You can make enquiries at any time using the direct phone number of your child’s ward. Nursing staff will not provide information about your child to other relatives and friends.

Delays, emergencies and transfers

It is not possible to predict the workload of staff in a major hospital. There may sometimes be delays with transport, tests and other services. We would appreciate your patience as we work to provide the appropriate care as quickly as possible.

Fire alarm bells will sometimes sound during the course of testing or because of sensitive smoke detectors. In the event of an emergency, staff will advise you immediately if any action is necessary. Please stay calm and follow their instructions.

Your child may be transferred to another ward during their stay in hospital. There are a number of possible reasons for this:

  • an improvement in your child’s condition
  • another consultant taking over your child’s care
  • to accommodate an acutely ill patient