It’s the tops for children

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IT’S service with a smile. And it is going down a treat among children on a hospital ward.

In fact, the standards of health care for children treated at the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust are so high, they have won a national accolade.

Children’s services staff have been celebrating after achieving the national You’re Welcome accreditation.

The inspectors work as a part of a scheme run by Hartlepool Borough Council.

And after being impressed with the standards they found on their first visit, they returned to the children’s ward at the University Hospital of North Tees to present the team with the award.

The Department of Health’s You’re Welcome quality standard, assessed the children’s services against a number of quality criteria.

They ranged from the general environment to how aware people were of the services.

The quality criteria lays out principles to help health services to get it right for young people. It sets standards to ensure that the whole team looking after young people understands their needs and responds appropriately to them.

Ward manager Vicky Whitfield said: “I am really proud of the team, who have worked so hard to help us achieve this award.

“It is so important to us that the services are the very best for our patients and this achievement demonstrates that we are providing a service to those standards.

“We’ve made sure that everything we do helps to make a hospital stay as comfortable as possible for our young patients. That’s why we’ve worked with colleagues across the trust to not only improve the facilities but also to provide a menu which suits our young patients.”

Hospital play specialists Sandra Jackson and Clare Wise, who have been leading on the work to achieve the standards said: “We never stop looking at ways we can improve our services for young people at the University Hospital of North Tees and the University Hospital of Hartlepool.

“Every member of the team got behind this and we had champions at every level working with us to share information and to guide us as we work through the standards.

“We often speak to our young patients to find out how we can make their hospital visit a little bit more comfortable and take away their worries. We’re really lucky to be able to have the latest games for the children and make the facilities more appealing to young people through donations.”