Sad as it is to know that some children must spend time in hospital, it is extremely heartening to know that so many changes have taken place over the past half century or so to make this experience more bearable for both children and their parents.
Today I have been reading about the gentle and, dare I say, fun way the Monash Children’s Hospital is preparing small children to accept - and be relaxed about - having a CAT scan, by allowing them to play at giving a scan to a chosen ‘animal’ toy.
Other changes over the past decades have seen parents being welcome (and able) to stay by their child’s side as the child undergoes hospital treatment.
Many, many years ago, when I had a very ill little brother who had to endure lengthy stays in the Melbourne children’s hospital, it was not a bright and welcoming building that we see nowadays, but a large, dark, sombre and imposing edifice in what was then a rather seedy part of town. Parents were not permitted to even visit their hospitalised children but only allowed to peek at them through a window during visiting times. To say that it must have had serious negative effects on an ailing child is an understatement; a situation that would seem unimaginable to us in these more enlightened times. But that is the way it was.
Progress can be brilliant at times!
I choose to comment on social issues and write creatively on a variety of subjects - for a variety of audiences.