The "best doctor" - children and young people tell us who should #ChoosePaediatrics

Thousands of children and young people have been sharing with us their ideas, hopes and wishes for “the best doctor possible”. Here's a summary of what they had to say!
Picture by George, age 8

RCPCH &Us has been speaking with children, young people and families. They think the "best doctor"...

  • Knows about mental health and wellbeing for us as children and young people, how to help and when to get other people to help
  • Uses a personalised approach - knowing our likes, interests, hopes, aspirations
  • Uses lots of different communication styles- including language and visual tools - that meet our preferences. Is aware of the use of LGBTQ+ terminology/pronouns and is able to adapt to support a range of information needs based on disabilities. Is an active listener and approachable, and open to our feedback
  • Is open minded and non-judgemental, not making assumptions about gaming or social media, or being from an LGBTQ+ background, or the impact period pain has on young people
  • Show respect, support and kindness, which will be different for each individual and at different times - from being friendly to having empathy, from taking all worries and concerns seriously to accepting our truth. And, being smiley and understanding
  • Has good knowledge of current child and youth culture and identity such as social media, education, everyday mental health stresses (exams, family issues, relationships), LGBTQ+, #BlackLivesMatter, the impact of COVID-19 on our future (education/employment)
  • Helps develop child and youth friendly services, with welcoming spaces for our health appointments, good signposting, clear confidentiality approaches, ways to involve and empower us as children and young people
  • Understands all of our medical needs and how best to support us in school/employment, about drugs, addictions, vaping, sexual health and relationships, menstrual health, skin conditions, mental health, or being a young carer. Is knowledgeable and explains when you don’t know and need help, reads our notes before we come in and is a great team worker and service representative
  • Pushes for change by supporting good transition between services, to empower and involve us in our individual care but also service shaping. Links link well with other services in health, social care, charities, education. Knows about our rights and help us to understand them in terms of consent, UNCRC and the UNCRPD. And, challenges others if thy are not being the best advocate for all children and young people

The best doctor is someone who can change your feelings of health can help you on the worst day possible


Can you #ChoosePaediatrics?

RCPCH &Us is a children, young people and family network, working with over 2000 young patients, their families and friends across the UK each year. Through the work of RCPCH &Us we keep children and young people at the centre of everything we do, supporting their voice to inform, influence and shape the work of RCPCH. 

RCPCH is guided by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, particularly article 12, which encourages children and young people’s voice in decision-making and article 24, providing them with the best health care possible. Find out more about the rights of the child and how it relates to your practice and useful resources on our Rights matter page.