Comet appeal: Cash buys important equipment

Daniel Fletcher, head of fundraising development, said: The items that are funded through the Building Blocks appeal will be in addition to those supplied through the NHS. And by supporting Building Blocks, people are supporting the purchase of all th

Daniel Fletcher, head of fundraising development, said: "The items that are funded through the Building Blocks appeal will be in addition to those supplied through the NHS.

"And by supporting Building Blocks, people are supporting the purchase of all this important equipment."

Speaking about some of the equipment they need to fund, Mr Fletcher said: "We are seeking an additional ventilator to the current one in children's A&E. This is to ensure that there is always capacity for two children to be ventilated at the same time in the case of an emergency. While such situations do not arise every day, when this does happen the second child has to be treated by a ventilator on an adult ward. While effective, this is not ideal.

"Also on the list are a range of items such as portable suction machines, syringe drivers and fluid pumps. While this equipment does exist on the children's ward at the Lister, having extra machines reduces the need to double-up or to stage certain treatments through being able to use a number of machines simultaneously.

"Seeking voluntary funding for some of these items also allows us to replace existing machines more quickly than would be possible within the limits of NHS budgets.

"Equipment such as the ultrasound machine is highly desirable, yet very expensive. Under current NHS capital funding rules, the available Trust-wide budget for new medical equipment is spent on replacing existing core equipment where failure to do so would put lives at risk.

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"Quite often, this makes it difficult to purchase additional equipment such as the ultrasound.

"Given that the original machine was purchased through gifts, it will prove hard for the Trust's special care baby unit to replace it other than being helped through the Building Blocks appeal.