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Super Clinicians Unite: Hero Painting Sells for $23.1 Million, Girl of the Year Celebrates Women as Clinicians

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Key Takeaways

  • Artists and toy makers have begun showcasing healthcare workers as superheroes following the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Banksy, an English street artist, sold his painting "Game Changer," which depicts a little boy playing with a superhero nurse as his toy Batman and Spiderman remain in the toy bin.
  • The American Girl Doll Girl of the Year is a young student aspiring to be a veterinarian, and her kit comes with medical equipment suitable for children.

In case you missed it, it’s cool to be a healthcare worker in 2021. 

So cool, in fact, that a painting depicting a little boy playing with his “Super Nurse” has sold for $23.1 million at Christie’s in London.1 

The painting, titled “Game Changer” by Banksy, was donated to the University Hospital Southampton (UHS) in May of 2020 during the first wave of the pandemic. The toy nurse in the photo is wearing a superhero cape and mask, and the little boy’s toy Spiderman and Batman lay forgotten in a basket. 

Christie’s has described the work as capturing “the simple, universal values that have come to the fore during the pandemic – family, home and time spent with loved ones.”

Until now, “Game Changer” had only been seen on display at the hospital (a reproduction will now replace it). The work sold for over 4 times its high estimate of £3.5 million ($4.8 million). The proceeds from the painting will be donated to University Hospital Southampton as well health organizations and charities across the country, according to the auction house.

In a similar fashion, American Girl Doll released their annual “Girl of the Year” as Kira, a caregiver to animals.2

Kira Bailey™ is an American girl who takes a summer trip to Australia where she works at a wildlife sanctuary and veterinary clinic. She spends her days caring for koalas, learning about climate change, and helping to protect the sanctuary from bushfires. In the beginning of 2020, much of the Australian coasts were destroyed by intense bushfires that killed off natural wildlife and vegetation. 

Kira’s™ Animal Exam Table can be purchased along with the doll and comes with essentials for animal care, including a stethoscope, an otoscope, an ophthalmoscope, a blood pressure cuff, examination tools, a scale, a bottle of saline, bandages, gauze scissors, a syringe, ointment, a patient folder, and a clipboard. By introducing medical instruments to children at a young age, children can become familiar with a grown-up career as a clinician of any kind.

2021 has only just begun, and already we’re seeing odes to clinicians in artwork and children’s toys. Forget Batman, Spiderman, and Wonder Woman; the healthcare providers who fight for our well-being every day are the superheroes worth celebrating. 


  1. Palumbo J. A Banksy painting celebrating nurses as superheroes sells for a record-breaking $23M. CNN. Published March 24, 2021. Accessed March 29, 2021.
  2. Meet Kira Bailey™. American Girl Doll website. Published 2021. Accessed March 29, 2021.

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