Clown Doctors spend a year getting better
The Northern Rivers Clown Doctors recently celebrated a year of bringing therapeutic laughter to patients at Lismore Base Hospital, Australias first regional hospital to host a Clown Doctors program. The national charity was established in 1997 in the wake of the success of Patch Adams, the first clown doctor, whose story became a movie featuring Robin Williams.
And it has been a great first year for the Clown Doctors locally, according to Dr Sniggles.
We have been delighted to work here with the many wonderful patients and staff, she said. It is not only the patients who benefit from some light relief, but family members, friends and hospital staff, all of whom have their morale lifted when the Clown Doctors appear on the scene. Our open heart therapy is contagious.
International research has shown that laughter has a positive effect on heart rate and blood pressure, reduces pain and relaxes the muscles. It also reduces stress and helps maintain a positive outlook.
After doing their mirthful rounds of the wards, the clowns professional performers trained to work in the sensitive hospital setting drew the winners of a fundraising raffle featuring a $1000 Fisher & Paykel washing machine donated by Harvey Norman, Lismore. The first prize winner was Colin Eley of The Channon, while second went to Tiffany Whitelaw, third to Teresa West and third to Vicki Sheaffe.
Major business and corporate sponsors in the region are invited to help keep this valuable service operating. For details phone Michell Mercer on 6622 0638.