Act now to save Glenfield Hospital’s vital heart unit

WE’D like to make your readers aware of the Hold on to your Hearts Campaign to save our closest child heart surgery unit which is at risk of closure.

The campaign can be accessed at

Our nearest children’s heart surgery unit is located in Glenfield Hospital in Leicester and if the Government goes ahead with plans to close it, patients from Boston will be forced to travel to London instead.

Our son was rushed from the Pilgrim to the Glenfield Hospital with a serious heart defect. He was two days old and doctors didn’t expect him to survive.

The length of the journey for a baby close to death, bounced around in a speeding ambulance, is a very significant factor and shouldn’t be dismissed as trivial.

The Glenfield Hospital has fantastic facilities including parent’s accommodation and play areas for the children, paid for by the Heartlink charity from the fundraising efforts of patients and their families.

The most important things to us were that the unit at Glenfield was small and quiet with a high ratio of staff to patients, and the worst thing was that we were far away making it very difficult for family members to visit.

The closure of the children’s unit would make the Adult ECMO service at Glenfield no longer viable. ECMO stabilises patients with heart and lung problems and has played a crucial role in treating swine flu patients.

This is yet another example of a Government ‘reform’ that could potentially adversely affect any one of us. You might need this unit one day. Please read the consultation documents for yourself and have your say.

The consultation ends on July 1.

Helen and Mike Sheridan-Shinn