The region’s most vulnerable patients are in safe hands with the commencement of services in the paediatric critical care unit at Sunshine Coast University Hospital (SCUH).
A first for the region, the unit provides care for critically ill children aged up to 16 years.
Paediatric critical care Director Dr Paula Lister said the opening of the unit meant fewer children had to be transferred to Brisbane for treatment.
“This is an exciting new service for our region which officially began on 29 January. Since then we have cared for more than 100 seriously ill children who would have otherwise been
transferred to Brisbane for treatment. Our aim is to provide a high level of care for young patients right here, closer to homes,” Dr Lister said.
“Many children with life threatening and potentially recoverable illnesses or injuries may now be cared for at Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
“Some complex cases will still be transferred to Brisbane’s Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital (LCCH) for care, but even these children will often benefit from improved intensive care
stabilisation before transfer Dr Lister said the unit was part of a state-wide network of units providing specialised care for critically ill children.
“We work closely with clinicians at LCCH to ensure we continue to provide the best outcomes for the child and their family.”
Adjunct Professor Naomi Dwyer, Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service Chief Executive, said the two-bed unit was part of the health service’s commitment to improving access to healthcare for locals.
“This is an exciting time for our region with the expansion of our services at SCUH to continue until 2021.
“We’re dedicated to ensuring we continue to serve the health needs of the Sunshine Coast and Gympie regions, and provide high-level local health services.”
The paediatric critical care unit is staffed by a multidisciplinary team including paediatric intensivists, specialised paediatric critical care nursing, and allied health staff.