Members of the RSM Paediatrics & Child Health Section have collaborated with poet Laura Mucha to write and perform a poem for children to let them know they’re there if they need them (whether during the pandemic or otherwise) and thank them for making their jobs worthwhile.
The doctors attended more than 10 hours of workshops in which they co-wrote a poem and planned their performance before creating a short film, which was previewed during a Section webinar on Tuesday 29 September. They have also created an illustrated poster, which they hope will be displayed in hospitals across the country.
Paediatricians are worried that the voices of children and young people have been lost during the pandemic and want to raise the profile of child health. Dr Najette Ayadi O’Donnell who initiated this RSM project, said: “The pandemic has exacerbated existing economic and health inequalities among children and young people. We were moved to act when children thanked us and other key workers by co-writing a poem with Laura and turning it into a film. This is our collective response back to them.”
Dr Guddi Singh, who co-chaired the RSM event where the film was previewed, said: “Child health today – like the whole of the NHS – is facing enormous challenges. We need to encourage doctors to step outside their traditional roles and to use both the arts and advocacy to help re-imagine paediatrics for a post Covid-19 world.”
Laura Mucha added: “What became clear during the workshops was that the pandemic was having a huge impact on doctors, who felt a pressure to be a ‘hero’ at all times. I think the constraints of poetry, as well as the process of learning about it and having a shared goal, made it easier for doctors to reflect on and share just how difficult this period has been.”
Find out more about upcoming Paediatrics & Child Health events at the RSM.