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The Sovereign Health Care Community Program has awarded £5,000 to the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund (CHSF) for a life support monitor for Leeds Congenital Heart Unit (LCHU).
The monitor will be used to further develop LCHU’s life support service – known as ECMO (Extra-Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation).
ECMO is used when a patient suffers from a critical condition that prevents the lungs or heart from functioning normally.
The system artificially pumps oxygenated blood into the patient’s circulation, sustaining their life until the patient can recover or receive alternative therapy.
Clinical Perfusion Manager Andy Nichols said: “This essential monitor will provide more detailed information during life support than can currently be captured.
“ECMO is only used in a small number of hospitals in the UK. Our ambition is to be recognized as a national pediatric ECMO centre. The benefits are that more children in our region and beyond can receive life-saving treatment in Leeds.
“This equipment has the potential to improve health outcomes and reduce the death rate for the sickest young patients with complex congenital heart defects treated in intensive care while suffering from respiratory and/or heart failure. “
Almost all ECMOs performed in Leeds are in children, at least half of them in newborns.
The duration of ECMO life support can range from a few days to a few weeks, with the machine and the patient working together.
Russ Piper, Managing Director of Sovereign, said: “CHSF plays a vital role in providing lifesaving medical equipment and it is gratifying to know that our donation to the ECMO life monitor can make such a difference to the heart health of children in the Region.”
CHSF is a self-funded charitable organization that has supported LCHU since 1988 with grants for vital medical equipment, parent accommodations and service facilities.
The LCHU is the region’s specialist congenital heart unit treating 17,000 babies, children and adults in Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire each year.
CHSF CEO Sharon Milner added, “The Children’s Heart Surgery Fund is extremely grateful to Sovereign Health Care for their donation to the ECMO Landing Monitor.
“The additional data provided by this new monitor will help the world-class LCHU make the best decisions for the care and treatment of their sickest patients.”