Six-year old Anam was on her way to school in De Doorns, a small town in the Western Cape, when tragedy struck. A truck hit her with such impact that she sustained multiple injuries including critical damage to her liver and head. Anam was treated at the scene by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) paramedics and rushed to the hospital in nearby Worcester by an EMS ambulance where doctors were able to stabilise her.
Doctors immediately referred Anam to the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital for the specialised paediatric care she needed. An EMS ambulance was again at hand to transport Anam and her mother to the Hospital. After spending many nights sleeping at her traumatised daughter’s bedside, Anam’s mom was delighted that her little girl healed well.
Anam’s story has a happy ending because the ambulance got her to hospital in good time. However, had Anam been smaller, the ambulance would have had to return to the base station to collect the paediatric equipment needed before picking her up. A delayed response time could have serious implications on the condition of smaller children arriving by ambulance at the Hospital.
The Children’s Hospital Trust raised R2million to equip four EMS ambulances with specialist paediatric equipment in the Western Cape. Two ambulances serve the Cape Metropole, one in Worcester and the other in George and are the first and only dedicated paediatric ambulances, available 24/7.