Christmas Day on the Paediatric Ward: Top Tips to get you Through

Working this Christmas? Dreading  missing out on fun with family and friends? Not to worry, here at BTTB we’ve covered a fair few Christmas days ourselves, here’s our tips to get you through the day.

1. It’s not that bad. We’re lucky as paediatric (& neonatal) wards are usually full of decorations, lights, presents and even includes a visit from Santa to keep the children’s spirits up on the day (& yours). Embrace it. Your adult medicine counterparts probably won’t be having as much fun on their wards.

2. FOOD. It’s all about the food. Join in and have a team Xmas dinner; bring in food and crackers etc and set up in the nurse/doctors office or if your hospital restaurant isn’t too far from the ward head down there with your posse and enjoy a brief moment of merriment (albeit it being alcohol free!)

3. On Christmas Day,  you’ll either get a ‘Q’ day on the the admissions unit or if it’s a busy one – you’ll be seeing the genuinely sick who need your help. The ‘coughs, colds and worried well’ will suddenly disappear on this one day of the year….we often joke that parents should use the ‘Christmas day’ rational all year when choosing to bring their little ones to hospital I.e. “Are they so unwell that if it was Xmas day would I take them to hospital or can it wait?”

4. We love a good Xmas Jumper. Wear one to work. Although, you may need to remove it if you’re working in the acute areas.

5. If you’re lucky enough to have the day off, be nice to your colleagues. How about leaving them some things to enjoy on the day (food, crackers, secret Santa presents…)  

6. Lastly, organise an alternate Xmas day celebration. We’ve personally had Xmas a week early, the day before (European style) and the morning of Xmas day after a night shift before heading to bed for the next shift and on Boxing Day instead of the actual day.

Now check out our Paediatric Christmas Quiz….how many can you get right? Why not turn it into a team quiz if you’re on the wards.

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