Therapeutic & Specialised Play Service

Therapeutic & Specialised Play Service

The Specialised Play Service provides therapeutic, psychological, diversional and developmental play for all children & young people, being inclusive of equality & diversity within the Alder Hey setting. We build relationships with children & young people which encourage compliance for procedures.

Our Aim & Vision

                           play specialist with patient.jpg

As a team of qualified  & registered Health Play Specialists & play Assistants  we aim to  provide play, recreation and activities to assist patient development, relieve boredom, aid recovery and create a child and young person friendly environment – leading to a positive patient experience.

Our Play Specialist team assists medical and nursing staff by helping patients to prepare for procedures, treatments and surgery. We also offer distraction, diversional and participation therapies for patients undergoing procedures and treatments.  We will support & guide the patient through their appointment or stay in the hospital.

Our Play assistant team aim to meet each patient’s needs and work closely with Health Play Specialists and the multi-disciplinary team. They provide developmental and fun play to our patients.  They also set up rooms, equipment and activities for patients.

'Play is not a break from learning. It is endless, delightful, deep, engaging practical learning. It's the doorway into the child's heart'

- Vince Gowmon

If you're due to visit Alder Hey, have a read through our top tips to prepare for visiting hospital here.

Our service works in partnership with the patient experience team to ensure there is a variety of events and visitors throughout the year.

We work very closely with the hospital charity team to provide a range of special events and visits for patients, families and staff.

Our vision is to provide patients & families with good quality & diverse practice which ensures our service is available to all, we actively promote the trust values in conjunction with the power of play.


Where are We? On most wards & departments.

What do we look like ?  The Play Specialists where a Lilac tunic & the Play Assistants wear a purple tunic.

Playrooms? All wards have a playroom at the far end of the ward, each ward has an outside play deck.

Teenagers?  Some wards have a designated teen zone, most offer the use of a games console or tablet at the bedside (depending on availability).

All patients & siblings are welcome in the playroom,but must be supervised by an adult.

Service Lead

Head of Service: Helen Pinder is the Therapeutic and Specialised Play Service Manager.

If your child needs specialist support please Contact her on 0151 282 4927 or speak with your nursing or medical team.

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