Ian Chang is one of the new paediatric volunteers at St John of God Murdoch Hospital, with the role helping to ease the nerves of parents whose child is having surgery.

A new volunteer role at St John of God Murdoch Hospital is helping to ease the nerves of parents whose child is having surgery.

Patient Experience and Volunteer Coordinator Hannah Howlett said a paediatric volunteer role was introduced after noticing an opportunity to help parents feel more supported.

“Our aim to ensure the parents are fully educated, cared for and supported through their child’s surgical journey,” she said.

“Having a support volunteer to provide information may ease anxiety whilst waiting for their child’s procedure to be complete.”

Mrs Howlett said the paediatric volunteers had great general knowledge of the hospital and were able to answer questions from parents. While parents are not permitted to be present during the surgery, they can see their child shortly afterwards in recovery.

“Our volunteer introduce themselves to the child and their parents/guardians before the surgery,” Mrs Howlett said.

“When the parents leave the child, the volunteer will stay with the family members, escort them to the ground floor and orientate them this with dedicated patient waiting lounge and our nearby Ferns Café,”

“When the child is awake, the volunteer will collect the parents/guardians and take them to their child in the recovery department,”

“We have had great feedback already that this new volunteer role is helping to ease nerves for parents and provide a familiar friendly face they can ask any questions while they wait.”

There are several volunteers who undertake this role in the hospital, depending on the number of paediatric surgeries to be undertaken each day.

Ian Chang is one of our new volunteers assisting parents in the paediatric volunteer role. He is one of more than 130 volunteers who assist in various area at St John of God Murdoch Hospital.

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