We’re proud to say this year’s runner up for the Health Play Specialist of the Year award is Claire Thompson, a Health Play Specialist at West Suffolk Hospital.
Claire has been a Health Play Specialist since 1999, and at West Suffolk Hospital for 18 months. She joined West Suffolk, and specifically the Paediatric Emergency Department, to set up a brand-new play service as previously there was no play provision within the department.
Claire was brought in as a charity initiative, and her role is proudly funded by My WiSH Charity, which supports the patients of the West Suffolk Hospital, Newmarket Community Hospitals and community services in Suffolk.
Since joining the team, Claire has transformed the West Suffolk’s A&E. She’s decorated the area with themed displays and information boards, spread Starlight stickers around the waiting room, bays and bathrooms, and brought in lots of toys, books and arts and crafts to hand out to the children waiting.
Her colleagues share that since arriving at West Suffolk, Claire has turned what used to be a boring and very-adult space into a child-friendly and welcoming place.