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Work well underway on new children’s development centre

Monday, 21 October 2013
Work is well underway on a one-stop-shop children’s development centre at Singleton Hospital into which ABMU Health Board is investing £1.9 million.
Swn y Mor (Sounds of the Sea) will bring services supporting children with complex long term medical needs under one roof. These include speech and language therapy, physiotherapy and occupational therapy, as well as consultant paediatricians.
Currently they are based in out of date facilities at Hill House Hospital or at Central Clinic which only has consultation rooms next to adult services.
CDC rebound roomPicture: Artist’s impression of one of the new treatment rooms
Mums Julie O’Connor and Helen Vaughan are the parent representatives helping to plan the centre. Julie, from Llangyfelach, said:
“I am so pleased to be a part of the centre’s design. It is something families have been looking forward to for a long time. By giving parents a voice it ensures the centre will completely meet the needs of the patients, as nobody knows their child as well as a parent does.
“The centre is going to be fantastic. Having all the services under one roof will make it much easier for patients and their families, as currently some parents have to travel to multiple locations for various appointments. This is an exciting time and we all look forward to the centre opening.”
Dr Carolyn Samuel, Consultant Community Paediatrician, said:
“The children’s development centre will allow therapists, doctors and other medical professionals to work together more effectively. We will be able to see patients jointly when necessary, reducing the need for families to attend multiple appointments and repeat the same concerns and history to different people.”
Julie Harvey, Head of Paediatric Physiotherapy, added:
“We will have a purpose built base for diagnosis and treatment enabling physiotherapy assessment to be more specific and co-ordinated with other members of the healthcare team. This will ensure each child gets the right input at the right time whilst working in a child and young person friendly environment.” 
Paul Stauber, Director of Planning, commented:
“As the centre will support children from six months up to the age of 18, it is important we take into account the needs of older children. The beds, tables and chairs can be lowered or raised depending on the patient. We have an adult sized changing room with a full size bed to protect their privacy and dignity. Also, we have a seaside theme throughout as decoration because it is one all ages appreciate.
“We look forward to services moving to the centre on a phased basis between December 2013 and February 2014.”
As Swn y Mor is in the maternity and child health building, a dedicated car park is being built next to it so families can go straight in.
CDC car park
Picture: Work is well underway on the new car park for the children’s development centre

As well as consultation and therapy rooms, the centre will have facilities which are new to the services, such as a rebound room. It has a sunken trampoline in the floor, enabling patients to roll around and feel their body move, raising awareness of their surroundings and balance. The centre also has a sensory room with white walls, floor and ceiling to project images upon, improving patients’ interaction and communication.
Outside there will be a new playground. Alongside the play equipment will be a sensory garden with interactive images and items to stimulate children’s senses. Built underneath a canopy it can be used all year round.
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