Work starts on new cancer and leukaemia ward at Sheffield Children’s Hospital
Patients at Sheffield Children’s will soon have a bigger brighter space for their treatment for cancer, leukaemia and blood disorders, as work gets underway to transform their ward.
The ward is being funded through donations to The Children’s Hospital Charity, which has until November to fully fund the project.
The Bears of Sheffield trail planned for the summer will play a key part in reaching the final £2.75 million target.
To allow work to get underway, the existing ward moved into a new space in the hospital last month.
Ruth Brown, acting chief executive of Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We’re so excited to get started on transforming this ward. The children who need Ward 6 often need to stay with us a long time – sometimes more than a year – so the environment makes so much difference to them.
"We already have amazing colleagues supporting children and their families and this work will bring the space and facilities to the same high standard.
“We are so grateful to the charity and its supporters for helping us get this work underway and together we hope to finish fundraising for the ward this year.”
The new ward has significance for families far beyond Sheffield. It is the Principal Treatment Centre for children with cancer and leukaemia from babies through to 19-year-olds within South Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and north Derbyshire. Patients travel from as far south as Northampton for treatment.
It sees around 90 patients every year, with around 25 bone marrow transplant patients. Some children stay for six to eight weeks at a time, children who require routine chemotherapy may stay for three to five days before going home. Others require much longer stays, which can extend longer than a year.
As well as a larger, brighter space, there will be a bigger and better playroom and it will maximise the view of Weston Park.
The Children’s Hospital Charity has revealed a ‘wishlist’ for the single patient bedrooms on the redeveloped ward. It is an impression developed following an extensive survey of patient, family and staff feedback which was conducted on the ward in September 2020.
The survey showed families wanted colour, a modern feel, more space and more access to natural light; more storage and improved beds, with easy-to-operate lighting options and control over room temperature; and a space which feels like a home from home.
The Children’s Hospital Charity’s arts programme, Artfelt, has been working with the project team which includes day architects, ward staff and the hospital estates team. This proposed new design includes a bespoke wall which can be personalised and made to feel like home; more en-suite facilities for patients and their families; a drop-down table for family meal times; a TV screen opposite the bed; internal temperature controls; and HDMI sockets for games consoles and computers.
Dr Dan Yeomanson, Consultant Paediatric Oncologist at Sheffield Children’s Hospital added: “It is really exciting to see work now underway. I am really proud of the care we deliver on Ward 6, but this appeal is about the patient experience and that’s why the charity funding is so important.
“The NHS provides equipment and an environment which is effective, and The Children’s Hospital Charity’s support will allow us transform the whole department, improving families’ experience of the care, and help make an extremely stressful time easier to manage.”
You can follow the Bears of Sheffield’s progress on Twitter @BearsofSheff, or @bearsofsheffield on Facebook and Instagram or visit www.bearsofsheffield.com