When James Morley first arrived on the children’s cancer ward at Nottingham Children’s Hospital, aged 11, he and his family found it hard to adjust to hospital life. There was no privacy for them to spend time as a family, a nightly race for bedding to enable his mum to stay beside him, few toys for smaller children and a queue for the few televisions available on the ward.
Now, James says he can’t believe the transformation after Nottingham Hospitals Charity, NUH Trust and the Teenage Cancer Trust funded a complete revamp of the children’s cancer and neurosciences wards, which officially opened last July.
The wards are now decorated with colourful wall art, there’s a new play room for younger patients, a family room away from the ward area, pull-out beds for parents to stay beside their children, and a wall mounted television over each bed.
“It’s so much better,” says James, who is now 14 and in remission after being treated for Philadelphia positive acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, a rare type of blood cancer. “The staff here are amazing and now we have an area that’s just as amazing. Coming into hospital can be very scary, but having a nice, colourful place to stay, with fun things to do, makes it a lot less daunting.”