Children’s Hospital is a new series on Channel 9 and 9Now, exploring the extraordinary work that takes place in two of Western Australia’s busiest hospitals.
During the first episode, viewers are introduced to five-year-old Harper, who enters Perth Children’s Hospital after suffering from intermittent headaches and vomiting.
Once there, her parents Meagan and Dominic are told every parent’s worst nightmare: That their daughter has a brain tumor the size of a golf ball, and that the best course of action is to have it surgically removed.
Stream episodes of Children’s Hospital for free on 9Now.
During the episode, Dominic remembers how his wife went to pick up Harper from school after he felt unwell.
“When he got there he couldn’t communicate well and his eyes were in the back of his head,” he said. “It was quite scary for parents to hear over the phone.”
Meagan then took the little girl straight to the hospital. He said: “They sent him for a CT scan, I was with him. You see the doctors examining and you know something is up… The doctors followed us back and they closed the curtains.
“They told us he had a significant mass in his brain. That’s all I heard and then it went blank.”
Watch brave parents discuss their daughter’s diagnosis in the main video.
Doctors later told Meagan and Dominic that the tumor had most likely been in Harper’s brain for months.
They say most need to be surgically removed, before treatment can be done to remove the remaining cells.
READ MORE: Why every parent should watch Children’s Hospital
It would be a very serious operation that always carries great risks, the doctor told them.
“It’s pretty hard to tell a five-year-old what happened,” Dominic added. “He understood he had a nasty lump on his head and we told him we didn’t want to hide it from him.
“But I think you should draw some kind of line not to scare them. Maybe the test week of my life, to be honest.”
Children’s Hospital executive producer Julia Redwood recently spoke to 9Entertainment about the family, saying that their powerful and moving story is an “incredible” thing to be able to show viewers.
“The spirit of this little girl and her parents, who had only been strong for her but were obviously very hurt on the inside…they were very worried.” he says.
“But for him, they stay strong. I think it’s just incredible, and that’s what a lot of parents have to do.
“Seeing that in the movies, seeing that shown in the TV series was just incredible. They are very brave people to come on TV for us and share their stories.”
After a five hour operation with Dr Sharon, Meagan and Dominic were pleased to know that the procedure worked.
The episode concludes by saying that little Harper is now responding well to further treatment from the PCH oncology team.
“I don’t think we can ever say how grateful we are,” Meagan says to Dr Sharon in a heartwarming scene.
The first episode also includes 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 highlights the extraordinary frontline staff who work tirelessly to care for, comfort, and comfort the little patients who come through the emergency room doors every day.
Children’s Hospital continues Friday at 8pm on 9Gem. Stream episodes of Children’s Hospital for free on 9Now.