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Hundreds of kids bring their "patients" to the Teddy Bears' Hospital

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Bild: MedUni Wien/Nussbaum
Anita Rieder, MedUni Vienna's Vice Rector for Education, and Vienna Medical Association President, Thomas Szekeres, assisted at the various interactive stations in the Teddy Hospital.

(Vienna, 12 December 2016) Unusual visitors to the Vienna Medical Association: from this Monday, teddy bears of all sizes, dolls and various cuddly toys, together with their owners, will occupy the premises in Weihburggasse in Vienna's 1st district.  Even on the first day of the Teddy Bears' Hospital, a joint initiative organised by MedUni Vienna, the Austrian Medical Students' Association (AMSA), the Vienna Medical Association and the Academic Association of Austrian Pharmacists, hundreds of children came along with their little "patients". Anita Rieder, MedUni Vienna's Vice Rector for Education and Vienna Medical Association President, Thomas Szekeres, were allowed to assist at the various interactive stations in the Teddy Hospital.

Image: MedUni Vienna/Nussbaum

Because of the huge interest shown in previous years, this year the hospital for cuddly toys will be open for three days, that is to say until this coming Wednesday (9:00 – 16:00 hrs, Vienna Medical Association, Weihburggasse 10-12). The children and their little friends are welcomed by around 50 teddy doctors, students from MedUni Vienna, at the exciting stations – from the emergency ambulance to the operating theatre, it has everything you would find in a real hospital. A hospital stay is also realistically simulated – the children are actively involved and allowed to help with operations and examinations.

"The Teddy Bears' Hospital is a great project and one that MedUni Vienna is very happy to support. The positive feedback received from many parents indicates that, following their visit, children were much less fearful about visiting their doctor or going to hospital," says Anita Rieder, MedUni Vienna's Vice Rector for Education. "The positive experiences that the children have here help them later on when they really have to visit hospital – and this also makes it much easier for their parents and doctors."

Medical Association President, Thomas Szekeres, is delighted to be able to host the Teddy Bears' Hospital once again this year: "The Teddy Bears' Hospital is primarily intended to stop children being afraid of real hospitals. The main idea is to give children positive experiences of a hospital, so that they are more relaxed when they really have to go to hospital." The fact that they are in a play situation where they are not directly involved helps to arouse their curiosity and shows them what goes on in a hospital and a medical examination, adds Szekeres.

Event: Teddy Bears' Hospital 2016 – still open until Wednesday
12 -14 December 2016 (9.00-16.00 hrs., admission free – suitable for children aged between 4 and 8 years, individuals need not book, for group bookings go to teddy-wien@amsa.at, Vienna Medical Association, Weihburggasse 10-12, 1010 Vienna). You are kindly requested to bring slippers or trainers with you. The mornings are reserved for pre-booked school parties but, in the afternoon, individual children can come along with their teddy bears.