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News & Media

Media Release

Date: 13 October 2017

RUH celebrates National Play in Hospital Week

National Play in Hospital Week

Young patients and staff on the Children's Ward at the Royal United Hospitals, Bath have enjoyed a week of music, dressing up and games to celebrate National Play in Hospital Week 2017.

This year's theme is the Power of Play and the aim is to raise awareness of the benefits of play and activity in the treatment of sick children and young people.

RUH Play Specialist Lyn Gardiner said: "Play helps children cope with pain and fear while they are in hospital. National Play in Hospital Week is an opportunity for us to show the positive impact play and distraction has on a child's hospital experience."

"This week, we've had a variety of fun activities in the Children's playroom for our patients to take part in. We've had messy play, crafts and there have been visits from Giggle Doctor Betty Ding Dong, Doctor Glow, Starlight Charity Captain Heroes, and Pets as Therapy dog Fudge and his owner Martin. It's been a fantastic week, we're really grateful to all those who have joined in and made this week extra special."

Today (Friday 13 October) saw a visit from some local heroes in the shape of Bath Rugby players; Taulupe Faletau, Luke Charteris, Kahn Fotuali'i and Anthony Perenise. The Children's ward staff also dressed up as superheroes to match the theme 'Power of Play'.

Melanie Gittins, Senior Sister said:

"Our patients and their families have enjoyed the events this week, and especially loved seeing all the staff dressed as superheroes. I'd like to thank everyone who has joined in with the celebrations.

The fun doesn't stop when National Play in Hospital Week is over, as every week our Play Specialists put on a variety of play activities to welcome children and prepare them to cope with surgery or other procedures."


National Play in Hospital Week (Monday 9 - 13 October) was organised by the National Association of Health Play Specialists ((NAHPS) and is supported by Starlight Children's Foundation, a national charity which provides entertainment in hospitals and hospices across the UK and grants wishes for seriously and terminally ill children.

Follow on Twitter #powerofplay and #PIHW .

Notes to Editor:

  • The Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust provides acute treatment and care for a catchment population of around 500,000 people in Bath, and the surrounding towns and villages in North East Somerset and Western Wiltshire. The hospital provides healthcare to the population served by four Clinical Commissioning Groups: Bath & North East Somerset CCG, Wiltshire CCG, Somerset CCG and South Gloucestershire CCG.
  • The Trust has 759 beds and a comprehensive range of acute services including medicine and surgery, services for women and children, accident and emergency services, and diagnostic and clinical support services.
  • In 2015 The Royal United Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was acquired the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (RNHRD) NHS Foundation Trust. The RNHRD treats patients from across the country offering services in rheumatology, chronic pain and chronic fatigue syndrome/ME.
  • The RUH is changing - we have an exciting programme of redevelopment underway transforming our site and further improving the services we provide. The Trust is now working towards building a purpose built RNHRD and Therapies Centre and a new Dyson Cancer Centre. For more details visit:
  • For more information about the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust visit:

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