The ‘Blue Peter’ skills of one of our Child Occupational Therapists has made life ‘smiles better’ for patients at the Bellfield Centre, part of the new Stirling Health and Care Village. Sarah Dove who has been redeployed there on a temporary basis to help assess patients for rehabilitation support, came up with the idea to create laminated photo badges which can be pinned onto Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to make communication with patients easier and staff appear less scary.

Sarah explained: “Communication whilst wearing PPE is challenging for both staff and patients.  I realised quickly that it could be distressing and confusing for the patients not being able to see our faces whilst communicating and also never seeing a smile, especially during this time when they are unable to have visitors.”

“I wrote a list of what we would need to produce the photo badges which included an instamatic camera, laminator, pouches, paper and lanyards.  I then contacted the Co-operative Bank, who I bank with, to enquire if they may be able to assist with purchasing these items.  To my surprise all these items, including a box of goodies, arrived at The Bellfield centre within a few days and I’ve been making up pictures for AHP staff, nurses, assistants, GPs and social workers.”

Sarah, who is working with people who are recovering from a wide range of physical and mental health issues, including some affected by Covid-19, has already used up 100 pictures and is now exploring other avenues to try to secure funding for more film cartridges so she can continue the project.