Queensland Paediatric Cardiac Service unveiled

Thursday, 12 June 2008

The official opening of the re-located Queensland Cardiac Paediatric Service (QCPS) was held at its new site at Mater Children’s Hospitals on Thursday 12 June 2008.

The $39.3 million relocation of the QPCS from The Prince Charles Hospital to Mater Children’s Hospital took place on Tuesday 20 May 2008.

The Honourable Stephen Robertson MP, Minister for Health and the Most Reverend Brian V Finnigan DD, Auxilary Bishop for Brisbane led the official ceremony and blessing of the newly relocated facility.

The service is now located in a paediatric facility for the first time in Queensland. It is a centre of excellence for paediatric cardiac services and expects to perform approximately 350 procedures each year.

The new QPCS facilities include:

  • cardiac specialist clinics and clinical measurements services
  • a new state-of-the-art catheter laboratory and an expanded Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), dedicated cardiac operating theatre and perfusion areas in the theatre complex
  • a 19 bed cardiac inpatient ward area
  • expanded allied health facilities
  • expanded parent facilities
  • administration areas for cardiac clinicians.

Mater Health Services CEO Dr John O’Donnell said the QPCS provided an environment where the needs of children and their families are well understood, with central social facilities available for staff and families.

The QPCS is supported by a comprehensive range of paediatric sub-specialties to ensure that the child’s clinical needs can be addressed by a coordinated team of staff.

It’s an exciting time for paediatric health services in Queensland, with a move towards greater integration of health service delivery.

Dr John O’Donnell,
Mater Health Services CEO

The transition of QPCS to Mater represented an important milestone towards the integration of tertiary children’s health care services in preparation for the opening of the State Government’s Queensland Children’s Hospital in South Brisbane by 2014.

My day by Liv White

On Saturday 15 July 2006 my son Dane was born with bacterial endocarditis, an infection that ate away the inside of his heart. At six weeks of age Dane underwent open-heart surgery to replace his destroyed aortic valve with a new one from a donor, as well as to repair a hole in his heart and remove any remaining infection.

It’s 5 am on Wednesday 27 August, the day of Dane’s second open-heart surgery at Mater Children’s Hospital. My parents arrive to look after our other three children who are still asleep. The drive to Mater is an hour from our house and we have to be there by 6.45 am. Thankfully, due to it being so early, Dane sleeps all the way. It is a quiet trip, my husband and I share the occasional bit of conversation but our minds are elsewhere. I didn’t sleep much last night and now I am fighting the sinking sick feeling in my stomach. All the bad memories from the last time come flooding back. What if they can’t get his heart started again? What if something goes wrong? I can’t lose him after so much.

We arrive on time and straight away we are taken to get Dane prepared for surgery. After checking all his vitals and sedating him we are led into the pre-op room where I change into a gown and hair cover. Only one parent can go in, which is so impossible for us. We have both always been there for him. As they put him to sleep I sing him a silly little song I made up when he was in hospital last time. I always sing it to him when he goes to sleep or is upset.

When he goes into theatre we wait. Emotions are running high. We wander around like two lost sheep, not wanting to go too far away but not wanting to look at other people at the hospital. By lunch I have a terrible headache from lack of sleep, so we head to Ronald Mc Donald House to try and rest.

At 3.30 pm we go up to the parents’ lounge to wait. I am waiting by the lifts for a friend to arrive but when I turn around, I see Dane’s surgeon, Dr Nunn, strolling down the hall with a pleased look on his face. Dane is out of surgery and it was a complete success! Dane is in recovery and is coping better than expected. An hour-and-a-half later he is wheeled into the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) with a new, larger cut down his chest. It is still so hard to see him like this but the fact that he is doing so well and that some of the nurses and doctors that had looked after him last time are there again is a great comfort to us both.

Dane spent 48 hours in PICU and five days later we were all home.

Liv White

Filed under: Children's
    (L to R) Dr Jason Wildschut, Angela Hedge, Ashlee Ellis & Marteen Ellis transition to the Mater ChilCEO Dr John O'Donnell and Health Minister Stephen Robertson MP officially open the Queensland PaediaLiv White with Dane at the official opening of the Queensland Paediatric Cardiac Service.Most Reverend Brian V. Finnigan DD, Auxilary Bishop for Brisbane blesses the opening plaque.Dr Mark Waters Executive Director Mater Women's, Children's and Adult Health Services with Mary MontDirector Paediatric Cardiac Surgery Dr Graham Nunn is introduced to Health Minister Stephen RobertsoMater Children's Hospital new Catheter Lab on level 5.Paediatric Intensive Care Unit cardiac bed on level 5.Dane's second open heart surgery at the Queensland Paediatric Cardiac Service.

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