There is nothing more precious, nor fragile, than the life of a tiny new born baby. In those first developing weeks and months of life they need all the help that can be given. Much more is the need for a baby with respiratory problems, or those considered ‘at risk’ due to prematurity, multiple birth and those born with other complex conditions. Constant watching and checking only increases tension for parent and baby alike. Frustration can spill over to other members of the family.
With appropriate medical approval, NARA provides respiration monitors or apnoea alarms, and other medical equipment for use in the home, together with suitable ongoing support through our Community Care Programme (or palliative care where necessary). Our 24-hour helpline is available to provide help, information and advice to patients and other members of the family, or carers. Where possible, we try and put `like for like` parents in contact with each other so they may share thoughts that can make them feel so isolated. This has been greatly helped with the help of social media i.e. Facebook and Twitter, where mums (and dads) can share their concerns and experiences with ‘like-minded’ people, make friends, and just know that they are not ‘alone’.
The equipment we use is changing this year. Graseby – our trusted MR10 apnoea alarm is being phased out as it is no longer being manufactured. This is a big wrench for us as a charity as these are the reason NARA exist, but we look forward, trialling new equipment to replace the terrific work that the MR10 did and thank it for all the lives saved. For the last few years we have been trialling another piece of equipment, called a PulseGuard. This equipment is based around a mini iPad and sensor strap and covers a wider range of conditions than apnoea alone, but apnoea can be caused by many complex conditions, so this has meant we have been able to help more very sick babies and children with such conditions. The results so far from parents using these are very positive and all are now using them happily without the support of the MR10. Although this is good, these machines come at a high cost which means we are not able to help as many as we would like, so we are still looking and trialling other equipment alongside the MR10’s we have left.
As with the MR10 this new equipment alarms should a baby stop breathing allowing the parent, or carer for the child to give whatever action is necessary. In extreme cases resuscitation is required. It is therefore paramount that any person having charge of the baby for a sustained period of time is taught proper method. We suggest that a ‘hands on’ course with local Red Cross, St. John`s Ambulance, or maybe your local surgery, is taken.
For information on apnoea and equipment used please see drop down pages.
We do not suggest that the use of any of this equipment guarantees the life of a baby. However, it will give every opportunity of assisting when needed. Many parents we have helped over the years have expressed the ‘peace of mind’ the equipment has given.
In the UK, many babies die every year through sudden infant death syndrome and figures have recently increased. As apnoea does not always come under the umbrella of infant death syndrome, it`s very difficult to detect how many more babies or toddlers die from apnoea attacks. Some conditions that cause this can be very difficult to diagnose, and to detect after death. It is like an indiscriminate silent stalker.
To get in touch with our medical team, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone our office – 01604 494960.