NHS Institute for Innovation & Improvement – Children and Young People

AhHa Publications was developed by Helen Sadler and Audrey Fletcher-Price, creating photographic storybooks for children featuring “Monkey”, a loveable character with a mission to support, inform and reassure children and their families before and throughout an unfamiliar hospital stay or frightening medical procedure.

In response, the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement, together with the Association of Chief Children’s Nurses (ACCN), with a small grant, worked with parents, and Helen and Audrey to develop a suite of resources for use in primary schools to educate and engage 5-11 year olds about emergency and urgent care services “fronted” by a friendly character called Monkey.

This creative and educational project is interactive and fun it encourages healthcare professionals to work with teachers in schools. It has the opportunity to include the wider community and is accessible to all through the addition of British Sign Language, Audio Description and subtitling. The impact is potentially enormous if just one child from each school does not head straight to ED and considered alternatives, pressure on Emergency departments could be relieved. Even in just 5 schools the impact has been amazing and encouraging e.g. if Harry’s Grandma now knows about Walk in centres after sharing the guidebook at home, then how many other families will access the appropriate facility rather than heading straight to ED?WHAT’S IN THE PACK?

Teacher’s Lesson Plan

DVD Resources Disc, featuring NHS Explorer’s Film, Monkey’s NHS Song and ample resources supporting the teaching (in line with the National Curriculum and Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum)

35 Children’s Guidebooks for children to take home

NHS Explorer Sticker Sheets

NHS Services A2 poster

Monkey Puppet for role play that encourages discussion and interaction to aid enthusiasm of the message objective

In an evaluation by Nick Medforth and Dr. Daz Greenop of the Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences, Liverpool JMU they commented:

“Monkey’s cultural neutrality and cheeky demeanour gives him universal appeal.”

“An invaluable resource tool.”