New ward opens at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children

A BRAND new ward, uniquely designed for 11 to 16-year-olds with a variety of complex health issues, has opened its doors at the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children.

Now known as Ward 35, it was built as part of the work to extend the children’s hospital to accommodate services when they move from Frenchay Hospital in 2014.

It consists of ten single en-suite bedrooms and a four-bedded bays. The majority of the beds will be used for patients who have undergone surgery or medical treatment; six will directly support young people with cancer.

Deborah Lee, director of strategic development at University Hospital Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, said: "This development is a response to the growing understanding that children recover more quickly and achieve better overall outcomes when the care provided is sensitive to their age and by association, the unique challenges facing them as they move through their teenage years.

"We are delighted with the new ward and could not have achieved this without the fantastic support of our charitable partners".

More than £200,000 was donated jointly by the Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Appeal and Teenage Cancer Trust to give the ward a home away from home feel.

To replicate a typical youngster's bedroom, the patient rooms feature funky furniture, vibrant wall designs, mood lighting, TV and DVD equipment and computer and internet facilities.

Ward 35 also has two social areas, incorporating dining, gaming and chill-out zones, a glassed garden room designed to bring a little bit of the outside world in, dedicated parents' quarters and kitchen as well as special treatment rooms.

Ella Cottle, 15, from Aust, has been receiving treatment for cancer at the children’s hospital over the last year and a half.

"The new ward is much more modern than the ward I was treated on and there are far more individual rooms which gives people more privacy," she said. "When I was in hospital and neutropenic they would sometimes move me to the oncology unit so that I could have my own space, but I didn’t know anyone on that ward. Now they won’t have to move people from the adolescent ward because there are so many single rooms here."

Children's neurosciences, scoliosis surgery, burns and plastic surgery services will move to the hospital in 2014.

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