We enjoyed a little trip up to Scotland recently to create a more welcoming environment for the Audiology Clinic at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.


The Audiology department has over 25,000 children passing through their doors each year but staff described the area as “bland”, “clinical” and “not very welcoming”.

So with the help of funding from Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity, the area is now awash with colour – jungle landscapes and friendly farm animals are all around for the enjoyment of the children and young people who visit the clinics.

Many of the visitors to Audiology have conditions such as autism, Down’s syndrome/T21 or other developmental needs and for them, examining their ears and testing their hearing can be a particularly upsetting experience.  This made the process of transforming the clinics into a welcoming environment one of paramount importance.

Jim Harrigan, Head of Audiology, commented “The artwork enhancements have brightened up the Clinic 6 area and made it bright, colourful and welcoming for a child.  Many of our patients have additional needs and visiting hospital can be a traumatic experience for them. Making the department more welcoming helps to reduce stress on families and professionals.”


Since the original opening of the hospital, we have worked with Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity and they contacted us to install the imagery.

Our designer, Vic Boulton, explains:  The corridors were very long, dull and daunting so we filled them with images of blue clouds to make it warm and friendly for children, using imagery above and below the rail with things for children to spot which allows for great distraction.  It’s a game for them: “How many rabbits can you spot in the grass?”

Even the youngest patients can enjoy the fun decals lower down, like the sleeping mouse nestling in long grass at floor level!


Some of the images used, such as the plane and the mouse, are used by audiologists because the sounds they make (ah, ee) represent different sound frequencies across the speech range.

Audiology staff can also use the farmyard animals and jungle animals when discussing different sounds with children.  The elephant is a particularly useful image because of its big ears and the sounds that it makes.

“The enhancements have helped create an environment that is friendly and a fun place to be,” added Jacqueline, a Paediatric Audiologist at the hospital.  “Some of our test rooms look quite daunting with lots of equipment and big heavy doors, so the colourful artwork can give the children something else to focus on and provide a good distraction.”

Other Audiology staff describe the overhaul as “beautiful” and “inviting”, with others remarking that it has “brightened the place up” for staff and children alike.

We’re pleased that we’ve been able to enhance this important space, making trips to Audiology less daunting for children and improving the experience for their families and the staff who use the space.


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