Frequently Asked Questions - While You're Here

Eating well while in hospital is very important. But there could be times when you don't feel like eating, such as just after an operation. That's expected. All your meals are provided free, and there are snacks available in the hospital. You will always have a choice, and special meals will be provided if you need them during your stay.

We know how important pets are. But because we look after a lot of very sick children who might pick up lots of infections easily and pets might bring these in with them, we don't allow pets in to the hospital.

That doesn't mean we think your pets are dirty! It's just that all animals carry lots of micro-organisms around with them that normally cause no problem. But when children are very sick they might catch an infection from these which they wouldn't normally.

Your parents can bring in photos or videos of your pets to show you any time, of course.

No. There are TVs on the wards.

If your parents have a portable TV that runs off mains electricity and want to bring this in so you don't miss your favourite programme, they are welcome to but will need to have it checked out by the hospital electricians before it can be used on the ward. The nurses or pre-admission team will tell you about that if you ask them.

There is a school at the hospital! The teachers can come on to the ward to carry on with your school work if you are going to miss a lot of school. If you are well enough to leave the ward but not quite well enough to go home, the school has a fully equipped classroom in the hospital for you to have lessons in.

In some ways, we hope you do - because that means you are getting better! But we don't want you to stay bored.

Your parents can bring in your favourite toys and games with you, so talk to them about what you would like to pack. If you are staying with us for more than a week or two and it's not in the holidays, the school staff will come and see you about carrying on with your school work.

We encourage your parents and family to visit as often as they can. The Arts Department often has creative things for you to do during your stay. The wards have TVs and radio, but you can also bring in your own portable entertainment devices such as an iPod. (If it runs off main electricity, it will need to be checked - ask about that on the ward.) And in many cases you can walk around as you get better, perhaps visiting the Play department or the restaurant with your parents.

Yes, including things like physiotherapy sessions. The only times when your parents or guardian cannot be with you are after you have had a general anaesthetic and are taken into theatre for your operation, but even then the doctors will tell them how things are going or if it is taking longer than expected and you will get to be with your family again as soon as you have recovered enough from the anaesthetic.

If you are unfortunate enough to be separated from your parents for any reason, such as if you are in foster care, then your foster parents or guardian can stay with you.

Some treatments mean you will have to stay with us for a while, with others you can just come and see us for the day. Some can take less than an hour, such as some physiotherapy; but others can take several hours, such as some operations. Your doctor or nurse will tell you how long each treatment should take each time you need it, and how soon they will be able to tell that the treatments have worked.

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