HEALTHCARE workers at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford can now take a short power nap at an 'energy pod', which looks like it is meant for aliens.

The comfortable, futuristic-looking rest space allows staff working on the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) , run by Oxford University Hospitals (OUH), to recharge during their breaks, or before or after busy shifts.

It is specifically designed for power napping, allowing people to rest for a limited, specified amount of time, helping staff to recuperate.

Dr Jacinta Cordwell, principal clinical psychologist at OUH, said: "We know that people work best when they are rested.

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"For our clinicians it is important that they have the opportunity to take breaks and feel refreshed, so that they can provide the best and safest care possible to our youngest patients.

"Rests of just 15-20 minutes can help reduce the impact of tiredness, helping people to function better.

"This pod will provide the opportunity and space for staff to rest, helping to boost their health and wellbeing, and enabling them to feel re-energised for their remaining shift ahead."

The rest pod was funded by NHS England’s South East Wellbeing Board following a successful funding application as part of their innovative ideas project, and is set to benefit more than 250 people.

It comes after the successful installation of rest pods and chairs in the emergency departments at the John Radcliffe and Banbury-based Horton General Hospital last year.

Space-age in style, it features a recliner chair beneath an adjustable privacy visor and, once activated, the pod uses soft lighting and soothing music to help the user relax.