Child Life Therapy: In House TV programs

These programs are supported by the Woolworths team and customers through the funds they raise for the Good Friday Appeal. 

Be Positive

Be Positive (B+) is the Hospital’s in-house TV program helping kids find out more about what happens in hospital.

B+ host Carlie and her two loveable friends, Jazz and Rocco, explore the hospital, talk to staff and experience special equipment.

The program helps patients become more familiar with the Hospital and helps them understand what might happen during their stay. 

Hospital Lingo

Hospital Lingo is the Hospital’s entertaining in-house game show that patients love participating in. Hospital Lingo is just like bingo but with the weird and wonderful things found in hospital.

The educational game distracts patients from their hospital experience and there are great prizes to be won.

Patients of any age can play the game which is aired on RCH TV three times a week.

Program proudly supported by the Woolworths team and customers

Posted September 2020

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A National Centre of Excellence in Speech Genetics: Transforming Patient Care

Even with intense therapy, children with apraxia have severely impaired speech development, which has lifelong impacts on literacy, educational and employment outcomes. 

Thanks to funding provided by the Good Friday Appeal, clinician researchers from The Royal Children’s Hospital and the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute are establishing a speech genetics clinic for speech apraxia.

The new clinic will draw on expertise in speech pathology, neurology, neuropsychology and clinical genetics.

The centre will transform standard practice for children with debilitating speech apraxia, moving from the current ‘watch and wait’ surveillance, or ‘trial and error’ symptom-based therapies, toward precision medicine, with a focus on genetic testing, advancing detection, diagnosis, genetic counselling, earlier targeted intervention and even prevention. 

This will improve life outcomes for children at the Royal Children’s Hospital and across the country.

Posted June 2020

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Transforming Clinical Care to Improve Mental Health for Patients: Phase Two

Hospital stays can be scary times for both children and their parents, regardless of age and experience. New people, strange equipment and an unfamiliar environment are a lot to take in.

Supported by the Good Friday Appeal, this hospital-wide project will utilise evidence about emotional development and behavioural responses to stress, to up-skill clinicians to consider the mental health impact of every procedure and interaction they have with a child.

The project, which focuses on the zero to five-year age group was successfully piloted on the Koala (Cardiac Surgery) and Cockatoo (Surgical and Neuro Care) wards. It uses evidence-based strategies to equip clinicians to deliver great care by training them to:

  • communicate with young children
  • approach care in ways that reduce psychological harm
  • recognise deterioration in mental health in patients and their families
  • engage distressed parents to support their child

Thanks to your generosity, supporting the mental health of infants and young children at the Royal Children’s Hospital will become part of routine care.

Posted June 2020

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Children’s Cancer Centre Tissue Bank

The Children’s Cancer Centre (CCC) Tissue Bank collects solid tumour, blood and bone marrow samples from oncology patients to learn more about cancer in children.

The tissue bank staff work in collaboration with hospitals, laboratories and researchers both locally and internationally to translate those findings into potentially life-saving treatments.

“Samples are preserved with the utmost care and dignity for future clinical and research purposes. Over 50 staff including consultants, surgeons, haematologists, oncologists, specialist pathologists, researchers and research enablers work together as part of the team,” said Louise Ludlow, CCC Tissue Bank Coordinator.

“Together we are committed to improving the survival rate and long term health outcomes for children diagnosed with cancer.”

In addition to the processing of samples for clinical trials, the CCC Tissue Bank also prepares clinical samples for further molecular testing (testing for certain genes, proteins, or other molecules in a tissue sample) as standard of care.

Thanks to donor support, the CCC Tissue Bank has also participated in important research projects outside of the Melbourne Children’s campus, including research conducted by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in the Memphis USA, The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Canada, and the Kid’s Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital.

“The Tissue Bank is an invaluable resource which allows us to collaborate in adequately powered international studies through sample and knowledge sharing, ensuring that we remain at the forefront of cutting edge paediatric cancer research,” Louise said.

Posted June 2020

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Pathology Tissue Processors

Thanks to the generous support of the Good Friday Appeal and 3AW’s Neil’s Wheel participants, the Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) Lab Services has a new tissue processing machine.

Featuring an upgraded model for preserving tissue samples and a highly specific microtomy device for slicing and setting the samples for analysis, these new technologies will greatly increase the speed an accuracy of processing tissue samples. 

For RCH patients, this means faster and more accurate diagnoses and a reduction in need for unnecessary and painful surgeries, with the new ability to do more with smaller tissue samples.

The two parts of the machine have been named ‘Neil’ and ‘Mitchell’ by the RCH Lab Services Team to thank Neil Mitchell, 3AW radio presenter, for his ongoing support of the Hospital.

The 2020 Neil’s Wheel fundraiser raised $213,000 for the Good Friday Appeal to fund this machine. 

Posted June 2020

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Apheresis Service

An innovative new process, apheresis involves the filtering and removal of blood components meaning that seriously ill children can receive potentially life saving care.

Apheresis can be used to assist with the care of patients across the hospital, including those undergoing stem cell transplants, sickle cell disease and leukaemia treatment, and to assist with the management of organ rejection or dysfunction following transplantation.

Apheresis provides critically ill children access to both standard and new innovative and cutting edge treatments, offering those with previously incurable cancers and established therapy to battle the disease. 

Thanks to the Good Friday Appeal, the ability to access on-demand apheresis therapies will also mean that acutely ill children, for example those at risk of strong and multi-organ failure, can receive this life-saving emergency care.

Posted May 2020

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The Kidney Flagship

Bringing together researchers from the Hospital and the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI), the Kidney Flagship aims to reduce the burden of genetic kidney disease on patients and their families by improving diagnosis and treatment, and the development of new targeted therapies.

The new clinical pipeline will see kidney patients with suspected genetic disease undergo a genomic test that can easily be added to routine blood tests. In many cases this test will be able to find the genetic change and identify how or why kidney disease occurred.

It will also reduce the need for unnecessary biopsies and mean less time in hospital for patients.

Following this test, researchers will be able to grow or ‘model’ the disease in a lab and aim to identify targeted treatments for the patient.

Ultimately, this could lead to the development of a drug or treatment that could improve outcomes for all kidney patients.

Posted May 2020

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Neurosurgery Microscope

For the highly trained neurosurgeons at The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH), operating microscopes are essential tools during these procedures for providing light and magnification during surgery.

Thanks to the generous community of the Good Friday Appeal supporters on Giving Tuesday, the RCH Neurosurgery Department will upgrade its equipment with a new operating microscope that includes the latest technological features to help save children’s lives.

The new hybrid microscope has advanced functions including an endoscope attachment which surgeons can use to identify tumours that are out of the normal field of view and improve access to regions of the brain that were previously difficult to reach.

It also features 3D technology so surgeons can operate in ergonomic positions and enhance educational opportunities in theatre.

Posted May 2020

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