Children’s Hospital is a brand new series on Channel 9 and 9Now, which explores the incredible work that takes place at two of Western Australia’s busiest hospitals.
During episode one, viewers were introduced to five-year-old Harper, who entered Perth Children’s Hospital after suffering from intermittent headaches and vomiting.
Upon arrival, her parents Meagan and Dominic were told every parent’s worst nightmare: That their daughter was suffering from a golf-ball-sized brain tumour, and the best course of action was to remove it through surgery.
Stream episodes of Children’s Hospital for free on 9Now.
During the episode, Dominic recalled how his wife had gone to pick up Harper from school after she felt unwell.
“When she got there, she couldn’t communicate properly and her eyes were in the back of her head,” he said. “That is pretty scary for a parent to hear over the phone.”
Meagan then took the little girl straight to the hospital. She said: “They sent her off for a CT scan, I was with her. You see the doctors go through and you know something’s up… The doctors followed us back and they shut the curtain.
“They said to us she had a significant mass on her brain. That’s all I heard and then went blank.”
Watch the brave parents discussing their daughter’s diagnosis in the lead video.
The doctors later told Meagan and Dominic that the tumour had most likely been in Harper’s brain for months.
They said the majority of it would need to be removed through surgery, before treatment could be done to remove the rest of the cells.
READ MORE: Why every parent should watch Children’s Hospital
It was going to be a very serious operation which always carries great risks, the doctor told them.
“It’s pretty hard to tell a five-year-old what’s going on,” Dominic added. “She understands she’s got a bad lump in her head and we told her, we don’t want to hide it from her.
“But I guess you would have to draw some sort of line to not scare them. Probably the s—test week of my life, to be honest.”
Children’s Hospital executive producer Julia Redwood recently spoke to 9Entertainment about the family, saying their powerful and moving story was a “wonderful” thing to be able to show viewers.
“The spirit of this little girl and her parents, who are just being strong for her but are clearly just hurting inside so much… they’re worrying so much.” she said.
“But to her, they remain strong. I think that is so wonderful, and that’s what so many parents have to do.
“To see that on film, to see that demonstrated in a TV series is quite remarkable. They’re incredibly brave people to go on TV for us and share their stories.”
After a five-hour surgery with Dr Sharon, Meagan and Dominic were delighted to discover that the procedure was a success.
The episode concluded by saying that little Harper is now responding well to further treatment from the PCH oncology team.
“I don’t think we could ever say how grateful we are,” Meagan told Dr Sharon in heartwarming scenes.
The first episode also covers other children and their families at Perth Children’s Hospital and Fiona Stanley Hospital in WA. You can catch up on 9Now.
The eight-part series shines a light on the incredible frontline staff who work tirelessly to treat, comfort and entertain little patients who arrive through the doors of the emergency department every single day.
Children’s Hospital continues Friday at 8pm on 9Gem. Stream episodes of Children’s Hospital for free on 9Now.