Starlight is inviting expressions of interest, or full proposals, from a suitably qualified consultant(s) for two interrelated projects in support of the Taskforce for Children’s Play in Healthcare.

The work, which needs to be completed by the end of May 2023, is to scope, review, draft and consult upon: –

  1. Proposed guidance on health play services to commissioners and providers, and a review of relevant service specifications for NHS commissioning contracts.
  2. Proposed national standards for health play services and a scheme for their adoption, maintenance and ongoing assessment.

EOIs/full tenders are invited for either one, or both, of these projects.

We expect that the successful applicant(s) will have considerable professional
experience of health play provision and in researching and writing about this field in a strategic or policy context.

About the taskforce

The taskforce is an initiative of NHS England and Starlight to work with the Health Play Specialist professional bodies and other relevant agencies to improve the quality and the reach of health play services within the NHS.


The aim is to develop guidance and service specifications on health play services for NHS commissioners and providers, recognise standards for those services, and to explore options for improving the infrastructure for the accreditation, maintenance of good practice, and professional development of health play specialists and the wider health play workforce.

The taskforce has been meeting since November 2022 and, having scoped the challenge and the opportunities in close consultatation with practitioners and leaders in this field.

We now want to engage a specialist (or specialists) with the relevant skills and experience to engage and consult with taskforce members, the wider health play community, colleagues and leaders in paediatrics and children’s nursing, and with NHS administrators and inspectors, to review and develop two key instruments of the systemic change we are advocating.

Express your interest

Please send your expression of interest or full proposal to: [email protected] by 3rd March 2023

Full details can be found here.