A Bromley woman has been recognised for her work using play to prepare children for medical treatment.

Janie Saunders' works with children at the Royal London Hospital's A&E who are often scared or traumatised, distracting them so they can receive the attention they need.

Following a nationwide search, Starlight Children's Foundation chose Janie as health play specialist of the year after she was nominated by colleagues.

Janie Saunders, said: “This means so much to me – to be nominated by senior members of the A&E team, who I have huge respect for is truly overwhelming.

"A huge thank you to Starlight, to be judged on my work and what I do on the ‘shop floor’ means an immeasurable amount and I am truly humbled.

"This secures the thought that the team I work with recognise play and my role as an important part of a child’s journey in A&E.”

Starlight introduced the annual award to acknowledge the importance of having play and distraction in a healthcare setting, awarding it during the National Associations of Health Play Specialists (NAHPS) awareness week for ‘Play in Hospital’.

Play and distraction is an integral part of treatment for a child in hospital, in Janie’s case when they arrive at A&E, but for others who may have ongoing treatment it is important and invaluable in preserving childhood while in hospital

Cathy Gilman Starlight CEO, and one of the three judges, said: “Starlight recognises the importance of play and distraction and is dedicated to supporting health play specialists with our services.

"Janie’s nomination stood out to all the judges due to her commitment to going above and beyond with incredible results in a very challenging environment.”