Alder Play puts children first as we lead the way in patient care

Alder Play is a fun new platform, developed in Alder Hey that incorporates some of the latest digital and cognitive advances to create a playful, magical and informative experience for the user

Alder Play will become a core way of how Alder Hey communicates with children and families and is free to access here:

The core aims of Alder Play are to familiarise children and families with the hospital, distract them during procedures or downtime and to reward for positive health behaviours.


The design of Alder Play has been created to introduce Alder Hey to children. In addition to familiar colours and textures, there are 360 degree tours of some of the main hospital areas and videos to learn what a blood test and x- ray are really like. Children can select a character from within the app to show them around the hospital. For parents there is a chat bot to ask questions about Alder Hey.


Alder Play enables staff, for the first time, to award digital stickers to children visiting Alder Hey . Once awarded the augmented reality stickers “come alive” and can be stored within the app for the children to look at again. There are also stickers that share Oli’s journey to Alder Hey and allow special content to be viewed. Award stickers are available for junior clinical experts.


Alder Play has Alder Hey specific content to keep children distracted and entertained. This includes Hardlees mini – games and cartoons . The stickers use augmented reality and once collected can be played with again.

The Story of How Alder Play Came to Be

The idea for Alder Play originated with one of our consultants and his daughter and the app has been created in Alder Hey by the Innovation Team working with a leading digital company, ustwo. Funding was provided by Alder Hey Children’s Charity (with significant sponsorship granted by Shop Direct and Liverpool John Lennon Airport) and the Trust GDE programme. The development of Alder Play has only been made possible through a collaboration of expertise from the health, retail, travel and technology sectors.

360 Images and Child Friendly Videos

The Explore Alder Hey section of the app contains six, 360 degree images of the hospital, these are ; the front entrance, the atrium, a ward, bedroom, waiting area and play area. This feature can be accessed and viewed from anywhere, enabling families to become familiar with the hospital before they arrive. They choose a character when they first log who accompanies them around the hospital. Also in the child’s part of the app is a “learn” section that is home to 2 videos recorded by children to show what having a blood test and an x-ray is like. In addition there is a section that encourages children to explore and enables them to self- award stickers and rewards.


Alder Play has lots of playful features including clouds that “pop” and a musical keyboard. In addition there are 8 Hardlees jigsaw puzzles with 3 levels of challenge and a pairing game also with 3 options.


The grown–up section of Alder Play contains a map of the hospital, a reminder of the terms and conditions and privacy policy and the “Ask Olli “chat bot. Alder Hey has been working with the Hartree Centre (part of the UK’s Science and Technology Facilities Council and supported by IBM), using Watson technology to create a chatbot that will  enable questions to be answered in real time.


Alder Play Sponsors

AH trust logo.jpg    charity logo.png   shop direct logo.png    liverpool john lennon airport logo.png    nhs england logo.jpeg

Alder Play Content Contributors

Hasbro logo 880x660.png   ustwo logo.jpg    lucy casson logo.jpg   Hartree Centre Logo.jpg  Jungle INTERACTIVE Logo.jpg   Studiowide Logo.jpg  fact logo.png