Over and Above has had a busy year raising funds for our local hospitals.

The Special Care Baby Unit Appeal has been very successful and has almost reached its £250,000 target, enabling the hospital charity to purchase the very best equipment for our youngest patients treated at North Devon District Hospital.

In particular the Appeal monies have enabled the Unit to purchase three state of the art Draeger neonatal ventilators which cost almost £25,000 each.  These new machines will replace the old machines, which are now almost 25 years old.

Lead Neonatal Ward Manager Liz Mills said “We are delighted to receive the new ventilators – it is a dream come true.  They will enable us to provide the very best support we can give to the babies on the ward during their stay with us.  The ventilators help a baby breath by blowing oxygen-enriched air gently into the baby’s lungs.  The new ventilators have touch screens and will replace three pieces of equipment. They are also con
nected wirelessly to the Trust’s Health Patient Records meaning less administration time for our nurses so that they can spend more time with the babies and new mums on the unit.”

Over and Above Fundraiser Julie Whitton said “The people of North Devon have been amazing as always.  Their fundraising together with grant funds, has enabled the hospital charity to purchase the Draeger neonatal ventilators, neonatal incubators, phototherapy devices, hot cots with control units, developmental soothers, care aids, breast pumps on stands as well as breast pumps for portable use which can be lent to new mums.  We have purchased i-pads which means a new mum can now see her baby in the Special Baby Unit cot from her hospital bed, helping to give reassurance.  We have also purchased toys for the new baby’s brothers and sisters to play with, which helps mum and dad to spend more time with their new born baby while they are on the unit.   It is because of the overwhelming support from our fundraisers that we have been able to provide our Special Care Baby Unit with specialist neonatal medical equipment “over and above” that which the NHS can provide.    This equipment really will make a difference to help our doctors and nurses to support sick and vulnerable babies who are born early or with difficulties in North Devon.”

On behalf of the charity, we would like to thank all our fundraisers and donors for their incredible efforts.