Sending post to children whose immune system is suppressed

Generally the rule on hospital wards is no plants or flowers, as they can release spores in the water into the air. When a child is having a bone marrow transplant/stem cell transplant envelopes and parcels have to be opened outside the Pals room and the contents taken in (because of the possible risk of germs on the parcel/envelope) and all items have to be wiped daily with alcohol wipes, so any pictures or such items should be laminated if possible or they can be displayed in clip frames. Cuddly toys have to be brand new (because of infection risk), clothing or quilts have to be pre washed, tumble dried and then sealed in polythene bags to avoid infection. Patients are also not allowed food and drink from outside until their new immune system returns – they are on a “clean diet” prepared in a special kitchen.

Some great gifts include DVDs, audio books/music, soft new blanket, fun straws, decorations that can be wiped and things to keep families entertained whilst confined to one room as well as cards.

We put a message on a Pals page when infection control is needed and remove it when the restrictions have been lifted.