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Former Children’s Air Ambulance patient now a ‘cheeky chappy’ as he celebrates second birthday

A former Children’s Air Ambulance patient from Walney, Barrow-in-Furness celebrates his second birthday on 23 March.

When he was three weeks old Ollie Robinson was on a ventilator in the local hospital suffering with more and more frequent apnoeas (periods of 15 to 20 seconds without breathing). He needed specialist care which was only available at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital – 100 miles away by road.

The Children’s Air Ambulance was deployed from its base in Oxford, flew to Warrington to collect a specialist retrieval team from North West & North Wales Paediatric Transport Service (NWTS), and took them to Furness General Hospital.

The team prepared Ollie to be transferred and accompanied him on the flight to Manchester which took just 31 minutes – a journey that would have taken nearly two hours by road in a land ambulance.

He was diagnosed with human metapneumovirus (hMPV) – a respiratory virus that causes an upper respiratory infection like a bad cold – and given physiotherapy twice a day. After three days Ollie was breathing on his own and a week later, he was transferred back to the hospital in Barrow by land ambulance and made a full recovery.

His mum Kerry says:

“If it wasn’t for the Children’s Air Ambulance transferring him to another hospital so quickly Ollie may not be here today. The Children’s Air Ambulance is an amazing charity, and we will be forever grateful for what they did for him.”

The family plan to celebrate his birthday at home with lots of cake, music, and a small bouncy castle.

“Ollie is a bit of a cheeky chappy, he loves playing hide and seek with his brother Isaac and burning off his energy either at the park or on his trampoline – so he will love the bouncy castle,” says Kerry.

She and Ollie’s dad Jamie will never forget being told the Children’s Air Ambulance was coming for their son.

“I was petrified because I realised his condition must be serious, but I could soon see that the helicopter had brought a specialist team to him and he was in the best hands from the moment they arrived. It was the worst time of my life and I was a complete mess, but I immediately trusted them and that made me feel calmer about the situation,” she says.