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Staff and former students from Nescot’s Healthcare Play courses have made a major input to an important new report on the value of play in children’s healthcare.

The report, published in September by Starlight (the national charity for children’s play in healthcare) and NHS England, makes recommendations for the development of play within children’s health. Alongside outlining the many benefits of play to the care and treatment of children throughout the health sector, the report proposes steps to be taken by health providers, standardisation of services and opportunities for developing capacity and skills in this specialist area.

Course leader of Nescot’s Healthcare Play Foundation Degree and Higher Apprenticeship, Norma Jun-Tai, was invited to participate in the executive of the report taskforce, in her capacity as Vice-Chair and former chair of the National Association of Health Play Specialists (NAHPS).

Eight Nescot alumni were also involved in the various workstreams of the report taskforce, covering the Healthcare Play workforce, Standards and future guidance and this collaboration supported the reports findings.

Ms Jun-Tai said of their input: “I was very proud of the wonderful contributions the former Nescot students made to the different areas they volunteered for. Although they have all qualified quite recently, they have built up considerable knowledge, experience and skill from their course, work placements and careers so far. All are making a positive impact on children’s health and wellbeing in their roles and demonstrate the potential of play to improve outcomes throughout young people’s healthcare provision.”

Sarah Owen, Policy and Public Affairs Coordinator of Starlight, described the contributions as “invaluable” to the report, which she said was both “an advocacy tool and a wonderful legacy document”.

The report, entitled "A Common Purpose", is an informative and inspiring read for anyone with an interest in children’s healthcare. It is publicly available through the Starlight website here

Information on Nescot's unique training courses in Healthcare Play can be found here