Parents relive daughter’s fight for life

Two parents will relive the harrowing moments their baby daughter’s life hung in the balance tonight.

Tonight the dramatic story of little Robyn Lathane from Preston will be aired in the final episode of BBC’s Children’s Emergency.

Filmed when she was just six week’s old as part of a series following the work of the Children’s Acute Transport Service (CATS), critically ill Robyn was rushed from Lister Hospital to specialists at London’s Royal Brompton Hospital.

A deadly infection was attacking her lungs just weeks after she had undergone a life saving heart operation.

“She had only just been out of hospital when she got a simple cold,” Robyn’s mum, Lisa, said. “But because she was so little and still recovering from her first trip to hospital, it caused respiratory stress.

“It was very scary. We took her in thinking it was just a chest infection and things escalated. We had the extra worry that it was going to affect her heart.”

The 36-year-old, who was with partner Ross, 33, while their daughter was put on a ventilator and transferred to a waiting ambulance by the CATS team, described the moment they arrived, headed by boss Dr Andy Patros.

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“When he walked in everyone stopped, like he was a god. It was quite reassuring to know he is so respected.

“They are so calm. She was critical. They dealt with it so smoothly. I think if it wasn’t for them I don’t know if they could have transferred her to the Brompton. Without them we may not have our daughter now. I have a massive respect for them.”

After nine days of treatment by lung and heart specialists Robyn was allowed home.

Now 20-months-old and having undergone open heart surgery a year ago, she is doing well.

“She will have ongoing stuff with her heart,” Lisa said. “But she is fine now. Her heart is not fixed, but you wouldn’t know there was anything wrong with her.”

The programme will be shown on BBC1 at 10.50pm

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