Almost £40,000 of intensive care equipment will help improve lives of newborns

Life-saving monitoring equipment for pre-term babies has been made available, following a donation of £38,380 from a charity set up by a mum and dad who lost their son, aged just 91 days old.

The new items in Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Basildon Hospital provide additional resuscitation, stabilisation and temperature management.

And they’ve all been made possible by the founders of Noah’s Big Charity, Richard and Lydia Hobden from Billericay, who have supported the unit generously for many years. Their committed charitable work is inspired by their son Noah, who was born ten years ago at Basildon Hospital fifteen weeks early, weighing just 1lb 15 ounces. Despite the care given, Noah passed away at 91 days old in his dad’s arms.

Richard said: “Seeing the tangible benefits of our fundraising is phenomenal. For Lydia and me, knowing that we can contribute to improvements within the unit continues to drive us to keep raising funds and awareness.”

Tara Rivers, NICU Matron said: ‘Our team is extremely grateful for the ongoing support of Noah’s Big Charity. Being able to provide care to pre-term babies close to their mothers is extremely important and these items help us to ensure we can continue to do this.

One of the items, the Criticool monitoring system, works by measuring the core temperature of a new-born baby every 66 milliseconds. Together with cooling wraps, the portable machine allows clinical staff to actively decrease a baby’s temperature immediately.

The second is the infant LifeStart trolley, which works as a bedside stabilisation and resuscitation unit which provides heat, gas and air supply, respiratory support, suction assistance, and temperature regulating equipment needed following pre-term births.

This machine means stabilisation can now take place at the mother’s bedside; reducing anxiety for parents and allowing for best umbilical cord clamping, which ensures the optimum blood flow can continue to the baby throughout treatment immediately following birth.

Tara said: “The benefits of optimum cord clamping are well researched and proven to be incredibly beneficial, especially to babies born pre-term. Thank you to the charity and their supporters, like Noah’s Big Charity, who continue to show such dedication in supporting our patients, neonatal facilities, and care.”