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Children celebrate national play week Dr Allan Goldman Paediatric Intensivist and Cardiorespiratory Unit Chair Having been in his new role as Cardiorespiratory Unit Chair for just two months, Dr Allan Goldman reflects: “One of the greatest challenges among the background noise is how important it is to create time for improvement and innovation”. Dr Goldman is eager to step up to the mark in his new role, having spent the last year on sabbatical as a fellow at the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement, focusing on improvement science, human factors and patient safety and quality. “What I like about the challenge is attempting to turn the theory into practice now that I’m closer to the clinical area. Given all the pressures, can we build quality safety improvement into our agenda? That’s what I see as the most exciting bit.” But Dr Goldman doesn’t want to introduce a culture of quality and safety to just one clinical unit, instead recognising its potential to have a far-reaching influence across the Trust: “I’m working very closely with Medical Director Dr Barbara Buckley to introduce a new ‘Hospital @ Night’ handover process on the basis that the hospital is very well staffed during the day, but goes down to a skeleton staff at night. During that transition the correct handover of information is vital.” Patient safety is at the heart of Dr Goldman’s work, and he recognises the need to make continual improvements: “The hospital’s already made great strides towards being a leader in patient safety,

and I give great credit to Dr Collins, Dr Evans and Dr Lachman as well as the Transformation team for setting up an infrastructure with some very important improvements. But there are an endless number of small things to improve on year after year. We’re about to start an improvement process on the notes, but you could also make gradual improvements in drug prescribing, medicine wastage and supplies. I think it’ll be a long time before we run out of ideas for improvement.” Dr Goldman is also keen to apply external learning to the Trust. He is heavily involved in Risky Business, an annual conference which brings together the highest achievers from a wide range of high risk industries to share best practice concerning the delicate balance of risk and safety. This year’s conference is full but anyone can watch a live feed and access lasts year’s talks for free by logging on to “Issues such as leadership, improvement and teamwork are universal, so at the end of these conferences Jane Collins convenes a debrief so we can decide what lessons to bring back to the Trust.”

From 20–24 September, GOSH play staff organised a range of activities to mark the event, from arts and crafts workshops and sports activities to a ‘teddy bear clinic’. The highlight of the week was a fête featuring some old favourites including tombola, catch-a-rat, a coconut shy and hook-a-duck. The aim of this annual event is to promote the role of play staff as an integral part of the multi-disciplinary team, highlighting the fact that play happens on a daily basis at GOSH, and not just once a year. Sue Ware, Head of Play Services, said: ”Play has an important role in reducing anxiety, building self confidence, helping patients and families cope with treatments and procedures and aiding recovery. The National Play in Hospital Week was a great opportunity for us to show the true value of play and our role in supporting it. I’d like to thank the whole team for their hard work and team spirit during this fantastic week.

The temperatures are starting to drop and the nights are drawing in, so Roundabout went along to Dinosaur Ward this month to ask some of the team: What food or drink keeps you warm in winter?

“A nice cup of tea keeps me warm, with a biscuit to dunk in of course!” Sunday Owa, Clinician’s Assistant

“As a vegetarian you can’t beat a hot vegetable stew and dumplings with a bit of crusty bread on the side.” Nina Gordon, Ward Manager

“I’m a big fan of hot milk in winter. Either that or a mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows on the top.” Rui Da Mata, Domestic “On a cold winter’s day I love chicken stew with a bit of cider in it. And without blowing my own trumpet, I make the best chicken stew!” Nikki Sees, Clinician’s Assistant

Reflecting specifically on his new role, Dr Goldman summarises: “Parents just want the best, safest care for their child and I think that’s always been the expectation and always will. There should always be a commitment to continuous improvement and innovation.”

The Risky Business Conference takes place on 17–19 November. Although fully booked, the conference will be streamed online at The website also features a variety of ‘how to’ videos and talks from previous years. 26

Young patients at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) were in high spirits recently as they celebrated this year’s National Play in Hospital Week.

ward e h t on Word Dinosaur Wa rd

About Dinosaur Ward: This is where children come before having an operation. After their surgery, children are taken to another ward for ongoing nursing care.

Above (left to right): Soma, his daughter Eva-Marie, Fairy Shari and Lion Ward Play Specialist Becky Edis-Bates enjoy Play Week.

For your ward to feature here, email Sally Mavin at or call ext *643042. 27

Roundabout, Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity  

A monthly topical Q&A feature with four staff on a randomly selected ward at Great Ormond Street Hospital.