Children may be disappointed the next time they go in for a check up, because the children’s toys that often sit in the waiting room of their local GP might not be there.
The National Health Co-op has moved to permanently remove children’s toys from waiting rooms in its six medical clinics across Canberra, to avoid spreading germs – will Brisbane follow suit?
Managing Director of the National Health Co-op, Adrian Watts told 666 ABC Canberra the easiest way for children to pass on their sickness is through sharing toys.
“When children come into the surgery, unfortunately most of the time they are carrying some sort of disease or infection,” he says.
“We want to be preventing disease, but what is really happening is the toys get really grotty.”
“Unfortunately, not all parents are looking after their kids or keeping them away from the playroom when they’re most infectious.”
But instead of throwing little Jimmy’s Tonka truck away, can’t staff just wipe the toys down at the end of the day?
“We’ve been operating for six years in some clinics and have a whole lot of aged toys that really aren’t appropriate and difficult to keep clean. What that means for reception staff is they are needing to wipe down the toys after every use,” Adrian says.
“It’s a nice thing to have on paper – let’s wipe our toys down everyday – but after just one use a child can pass on a toy to the next child and there goes the disease with it.”
“In that instance we’re not in the community prevent disease at all, we’re contributing to it.”
What about a hand sanitiser system? Huh, would that work?
Soft toys, abacuses, blocks and dolls will be some of the toys disappearing from medical clinics. However, Adrian says not all toys will be removed.
“We’ll be keeping kids books in each of the waiting areas,” he says.
“I’d like to see more electronic device that are readily accessible, easy to use and easy to keep clean.”
Sorry, Jimmy, looks like the truck is out.
What do you think about this? Do you think toys should be removed from medical centres?