Mumbai

Clown brings cheer to children at JJ Hospital

Stress buster: Nir Raz indulges patients in the paediatric ward in games at JJ Hospital on Friday.

Stress buster: Nir Raz indulges patients in the paediatric ward in games at JJ Hospital on Friday.  

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Israeli Nir Raz performs magic tricks

The gloomy ward No. 38 at JJ Hospital came alive on Friday. A clown walked into the ward, and indulged the paediatric patients in games, magic tricks and play acts.

The clown therapist, Nir Raz, popularly known as a ‘clown doctor’, had flown in from Israel to expose the hospital to the concept of therapeutic clowns, which is well known in Israel.

“Hospitalisation is often a stressful experience for many, especially children who have a fear of disease, needles and the overall hospital setting. Therapeutic clowns in Israel are hospital staff who work along to release this stress,” said Dr. Pallavi Saple, dean of the hospital.

Dr. Saple said the hospital is collaborating with the Israel government on a lot of things and exposure to therapeutic clowns was one of the initiatives.

Special training

“Therapeutic clowns in Israel are specially trained in therapy and dealing with patients, mainly sick children,” she said. While Friday’s event was an introductory one, Dr. Saple said they are considering it for the long run. “We have discussed the possibility of sending our team for training to Israel,” she said.

The medical clowns not only aim to spread joy but often also explain the disease and treatment in a playful manner. “Once the patients feel happy and have the will power, the treatment falls in place,” said Dr. Abhijeet Joshi, assistant professor of Pharmacology at JJ Hospital.

The event was also attended by the Deputy Consulate General of Israel, Nimrod Kalmar.

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Printable version | Dec 15, 2019 10:41:07 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/clown-brings-cheer-to-children-at-jj-hospital/article30119828.ece

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