When a Flamingo feels safer than a Bear

I love this Hospital and I will never be able to demonstrate exactly how grateful we are that Martha Grace is being treated here.

I know she was very poorly after surgery and I know that the Cardiac Nurse Specialist on Flamingo ward worked tirelessly around the clock to get her as far as they did.

I should be relieved that they think she's well enough to leave Intensive Care.

But if I'm being truthful - I'm not convinced she is.

As a parent you get used to the one-to-one care of NICU and CICU and you feel safe and secure there. So
to be moved to High Dependency is a complete shock.

Adapting to there being 1 nurse to 3 patients is quite difficult. It's much more relaxed than CICU - parents are expected to be more involved in the day to day care of the child, and rightly so; but when they still have a handful of wires coming out of here and there it can be quite daunting. Also there are fewer members of staff around when your Baby's monitor suddenly beeps loudly in alarm, let alone a Cardiac Nurse Specialist.

Her respiratory rate and heart rate have been quite high for the past few days, yet they say she doesn't need to be on the CPap to help her out. They're also trying to convince me to take her off the ECG monitor because they say she doesn't need it. One Doctor even ordered a chest Xray and a Blood Gas test to see why she was breathing quickly - but we were told by a former ITU nurse later on that day the reason she was breathing quickly was because she was being fed too much too fast, and breathing quickly increases the amount of CO2 in her blood. Why didn't the Doctor know this. During the ward rounds the next morning the Doctor said "we" had been too ambitious with her feeds - somehow me and Mark were included in this collective.

Petra from CICU came to visit Martha yesterday and I pleaded with her to come look after Martha on Bear Ward or take us back to Flamingo.

The plan now is to build her feeds slowly, and let her body get used to tolerating bigger amounts and then try bottle feeding her.

I don't care how long it takes - I rather we take it slowly and get it right rather than rush Martha and make her ill. She's worked far too hard to recover from surgery to let it be ruined by rushing her feeds.



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