Donations help Rugby families rest at night

Debra Platt with her son Hyrum and Jenny Hammond. Photo by Eddie White.
Debra Platt with her son Hyrum and Jenny Hammond. Photo by Eddie White.
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A donation from a group which supports a hospital in Rugby has helped local children with complex medical conditions.

The Friends of St Cross Hospital, a charity which supports the Hospital of St Cross and the local community and mental health services in the town, also help by donating much-needed equipment.

Thanks to the donations staff can then issue the equipment out to those who need it.

One child who needed special equipment was Hyrum Platt. Hyrum and his mother Debra recently went to the Orchard Centre, where they met Jenny Hammond, community children’s nurse at the centre, to tell her about how Hyrum’s new donated monitor has helped them.

Until she had the monitor Hyrum’s mum had to sleep downstairs in his room and did not get proper sleep because she was worrying about her son.

Because of the new monitor, she can now sleep in her own room knowing that if her son have a problem during the night the monitor will alert her.

Jenny said: “Specialised equipment for children with complex needs can be expensive and difficult for families to be able to fund, and sadly not available via NHS funding. An epilepsy mat can make a difference of whether a parent can get a restful night’s sleep because they know it will alarm if their son or daughter has a generalised seizure.

“These children are likely to have had adaptations to the family home to provide much needed facilities to meet their physical needs which means that not only does the child have their own room; they are downstairs, away from their parents.

“The epilepsy mat goes under the mattress and detects abnormal movements which are then alarmed to parents through a radio link by the bedside.

“As a result of support from Friends of St Cross, we have been able to loan out epilepsy mats to some of our most complex children in Rugby to help maintain a safer sleeping environment for the child and therefore family. I have had parents show true relief at acquiring such a mat because it meant that there was a system of alerting them immediately to the start of their child’s seizure, whilst the family slept.”

Willy Goldschmidt, Chairman of the Friends, said “It was a real pleasure to meet Debra and Hyrum and hear at first hand what a difference this donation and a previous donation of a bed bumper has made for this family.

“It is a privilege to know that the generosity of the community who support the charity can be put to such good effect and we look forward to raising the money needed to develop the new Sleep Studies observation beds at St Cross which will bring a new specialist service to the West Midlands.”