Why we fly

Isaac’s Story

The Children’s Air Ambulance provides an amazing service, and we are so grateful that they were there to help Isaac when he needed them most.

Rebecca, Isaac’s mum

Isaac was born with severe respiratory distress and damage to his lung tissue after suffering acute meconium aspiration at birth. So serious was his condition, that the medical staff told his parents to prepare for the worst. News that no parent wants to hear.

Doctors placed poor Isaac on mechanical ventilation, but despite their best efforts, the ventilator was unfortunately ineffective.

Consultants quickly called Leicester Glenfield Hospital’s ECMO (extra corporeal membrane oxygenation) team to take him by land ambulance to their ECMO machine. This machine provides respiratory support to patients whose heart and/or lungs are so severely diseased or damaged that they can no longer function properly.

To everyone’s relief, after two nights on ECMO and against all the odds, he started responding well to treatment.

Just a few days later, the Children’s Air Ambulance was called to fly Isaac back to his local hospital in Taunton to continue his recovery. Although Isaac was on the mend, he was still incredibly vulnerable and travelling by road would have caused him an unnecessary level of risk at this stage.

And so, our partner medical team in the NHS Embrace, stabilised Isaac in our specially-adapted baby pod on board our air ambulance and we flew him back to Taunton. It took just 59 minutes, a fraction of the time it would have taken by road and with much less stress and strain on baby Isaac.

Thankfully, we have specialist equipment on-board to ensure we can transport delicate and vulnerable children wherever they need to go under any conditions.

It’s only through your support that we can help save lives like Isaac’s. Though it seems surprising, we are not government funded and totally rely on your donations no matter how small, to help support our air ambulance network together with our highly trained, dedicated and specialist teams.

“When a baby or child needs critical care, the speed at which they receive that care is vital. The Children’s Air Ambulance is working with a network of specialist NHS emergency transport teams to transfer our most vulnerable patients between hospitals quickly and safely. This provision is helping to provide a world-class level of service and I strongly believe that is what our patients and families deserve.” (Steve Hancock, Clinician at Embrace)