It’s October 31st and you have a unit full of children (and adults wishing to be children) who are disappointed at being hospitalized on Halloween. Don’t despair! Be a good nurse and bring the spirit, costumes, fun, and of course, the trick-or-treat that comes with Halloween to them!
Planning a Halloween party is an obvious way to celebrate. But here are other ideas for sharing the festivities with your patients:
Decorate the entire nursing unit before Halloween. On the day itself, bring decorations into the patients’ rooms and decorate or have the patients help decorate. It does not take much to bring the spirit to them!
Dress the Part
Get permission to dress up for Halloween. Of course, it is not appropriate for all units. But if you’re a pediatric nurse, it’s a must! No scary costumes, though, to avoid terrorizing the kids.
Get Family Members Involved
Let family and friends of the patient know what is planned for Halloween and encourage them to come in costume. Ask them if they can bring costumes for the patients. Yes, that includes adult patients too!
Bring Trick-or-Treaters to the Patients
Enlist volunteers from different departments to bring goodies to the patients throughout the day/evening hours. Advertise this “Reverse Trick or Treat Day". Instead of the patients trick or treating, the goodies will be delivered to them! If patients can’t have sugar, you can substitute it with sugar-free candy or other little goodies such as toy necklaces, little rings, and other party favors. The best part about this is that tricks and treats will be delivered by good nurses throughout the entire day!
Arts and Crafts Time
Plan a project for the patients on Halloween. Make pumpkin chains out of construction paper or give each of your patients a real pumpkin and the supplies to decorate it. This will add to the decorations already in their room and lift their spirits. You can even use old hospital gowns and worn-out nursing uniforms to make costumes.
Bring the spirit of Halloween to work that day and keep it alive. Remember, as a good nurse you have to be there too!
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