How To Support Babies Born With Heart Conditions This Heart Week

One in every 111 babies is born with congenital heart disease (CHD) – that’s more than 5,000 newborns each year in the UK.

This February, Heart Week is an opportunity for friends, colleagues, family, team mates or neighbours to join together to do something amazing. .  Learn more about Heart Week and sign up to take part here

Through Tiny Tickers’ Heart Week, each of us can raise awareness and funds to help these babies – ensuring they are given a fighting chance to beat their condition. Finding these babies is vital. Last year, over 1,000 newborns were discharged from UK hospitals with no one realising they had a life-threatening heart condition.  Tiny Tickers is launching a national initiative to provide all maternity wards with Pulse Oximetry Machines.  These machines test the oxygen levels in babies before they are sent home. Low oxygen saturation could indicate a serious heart condition and baby will get the treatment they need immediately.

Every penny counts. Babies with undetected heart defects will often fall into the early stages of heart failure – significantly impacting their long-term quality of life and associated risks of heart failure, including brain damage.

When these defects are detected during pregnancy, babies get treatment from the first possible moment.  Prenatal detection also means that parents-to-be get the support they need to prepare them for the future; and it means fewer dangerous and costly emergency admissions to hospital.

Damian’s daughter, Elsie, had a serious heart defect which wasn’t detected until she was already very ill. Damian says, “We are forever in debt to all the people who helped save her life. We were one of the lucky ones. 

The thought of a congenital heart defect going unnoticed in other babies and them not being as lucky as Elsie is very disturbing.

Further training for sonographers, midwives and pulse oximetry machines in maternity wards would make such a difference and hopefully save lots of babies.”

To read Elsie’s story, click here.

Heart conditions are the most common and deadly birth defect in babies – responsible for 1 in every 13 infant deaths.  Tiny Tickers is a small charity but their work is hugely practical and effective – just £750 is enough to provide training for up to 10 sonographers or a Pulse Oximetry machine for a maternity ward. If they can raise £10,000 though Heart Week 2017, they’ll be able to help many more babies and their parents this year.

What your support can do

Here is how Tiny Tickers can use the money you raise:

£75  – Provides specialist on-site training for a sonographer to be able to detect heart problems during a pregnancy scan.

£750  – provides a pulse oximetry machine for a maternity ward, where each baby can have their oxygen levels tested before being sent home.

£2,500  – Produces a training video into one of the most common forms of heart defect for sonographers to refer to during scans.

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January 25th, 2018 / Leanne Taylor / 0 comments

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