New portable incubator is helping improve care for Basildon babies

The fundraising efforts of a former Mayor of Thurrock have helped buy a £35,000 portable incubator at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Basildon Hospital.

Cllr Susan Little, the current Mayor of Thurrock, and former Mayor Cllr James Halden recently presented Basildon’s NICU with funds to support the purchase of the new machine, making it easier to transport premature and poorly babies within the unit.

During his time as Mayor in 2022, Cllr Halden picked NICU as his deserving cause of choice, as his family had benefitted from the care provided in the unit. Following successful fundraising efforts, which saw him work closely with DP World, £16,000 was raised to contribute to the cost of the new incubator.

Tara Rivers, NICU Matron, at Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, explained how the new equipment will make a big difference. She said: “Our previous portable incubator, was large and difficult to manoeuvre, this newer model will be of huge benefit to our staff and babies. The funding provided will allow us to transport babies within the hospital more efficiently, we are so grateful for the support we are receiving from the current and former mayor.”

Cllr Halden visited the unit with Cllr Little to see the new incubator, he was joined by his two nephews, both who received care on the unit in 2019. He said: “It’s been a great pleasure to support Basildon’s Neonatal Unit. I know from family experience that the care provided by the team here is exemplary; it’s a real privilege to have been able to contribute towards a new portable incubator.

“I’ve seen first-hand how it will benefit both the unit and its patients at the start of their young lives.”