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Santa makes live video call to Blossom Children and Young People’s Centre

Sister Hughes and Helen are joined with characters from Causeplay, Jack Josh and Mum Diana (from Seapatrick) and Blake (from Portadown)

Patients in the Blossom Children and Young People’s Centre at Craigavon Area Hospital were thrilled to be able to speak directly to Santa Claus thanks to a live video call from the North Pole.

During the call, Santa got to hear the children’s Christmas wishes before staff helped give out the presents on his behalf.

All the arrangements for this very special video call were made by the Southern Trust’s IT Team with the help of network hardware supplier Cisco.

Darren Meade, IT Communications Officer for the Southern Trust said: “Santa is very busy over Christmas, but using video technology means that he can make sure that these children don’t miss out on the opportunity to tell him directly what gifts they would like on Christmas day.”

Siobhan Hanna, Assistant Director of Informatics said: “Staff make excellent use of video conferencing every day. It helps avoid valuable travel time for our staff, as well as the expense of fuel and car parking.

“Many of our clinical staff use video conferencing to link with colleagues in other hospitals, for example the Regional Cancer Centre, to gain advice on treatment and care of patients.

Colette Loughran and her daughter Therese, (from Galbally) pictured with
Southern Trust Staff, Santa’s Elves from Cisco AND Santa himself

“We also use this in the form of a robot, to provide advice from our Intensive Care Unit in Craigavon Area Hospital, to clinicians caring for patients in Daisy Hill Hospital.”

Ward Sister Lyndsey Hughes said: “The Christmas period can be an especially difficult time to be in hospital and today has brought along some festive cheer to the ward.

“I would like to thank our IT department and Cisco for creating such a wonderful experience for the children and their parents. The IT team do a great job all year round making sure all our systems are working 24/7 so clinicians can do their jobs effectively.”

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