Learn to communicate clearly with children

Image and Audio © BBC World Service
Listen to doctors discussing Dr Jargon on the BBC World Service’s Health Check programme

Paediatrics is the first in the Dr Jargon series, designed to encourage health professionals to use simple, jargon-free language when talking to child patients about medical conditions, treatments and their health.

Medicine can seem like a foreign language to most people, and it can be particularly confusing for children. Being unwell or visiting the hospital can be a scary, overwhelming experience, and despite the best efforts of professionals, children can be left feeling confused. Paediatric patients report feeling lost and frustrated, and find it easier to concentrate on getting better when they understand what’s really going on.

Dr Victoria Rodulson
Inverness, Scotland.

“I know that for many children coming into hospital is a scary and overwhelming experience. With this in mind, I developed the idea for Dr Jargon, and hope that by encouraging healthcare professionals and students to practise using child-friendly language in a fun way we can make staying in hospital a little easier for our paediatric patients.”

We often use words children don’t understand

“They don't explain things well... Please tell them to speak slower and not use long words.”

13 year-old girl

“They don’t know what she will understand and how she will react… She gets anxious if she doesn’t know what is going on.”

Mother of 5 year-old girl

“Sometimes when they use longer words I worry that there is something very serious wrong with me."

14 year-old girl

Lose the jargon – practise child-friendly language

Dr Jargon: Paediatrics challenges players to describe and guess medical conditions and treatments against the clock. Players take turns to select a card and describe the medical term on it to their teammates, but don’t mention any of the jargon words listed on your card – you’ll get “busted” by the opposite team and lose a point!

Playing Dr Jargon encourages players to think outside the box, and consider alternative ways of describing medical conditions and treatments. It’s a fun way for professionals and students to practise using simple, child friendly language. Players will think creatively and figure out how to explain complex medical terms without relying on complicated jargon!

How many will you describe without getting “busted”?

Designed for all health professionals

The benefits of playing Dr Jargon: Paediatrics aren’t just limited to staff working in children’s hospitals and wards – it’s suitable for any health professional. If you work with children on a daily, weekly or even monthly basis, Dr Jargon will help you to improve how you communicate with children.

If you’re a doctor, medical student, nurse, or allied health professional, it’s time to welcome Dr Jargon to your place of work!

Bookmark our website and look out for more Dr Jargon topics.

  •   3 - 8 players

  •    Up to 30 minutes of play

  •    Over 150 cards!

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Dr Jargon

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