Ru­ral health role a suc­cess

Gatton Star - - FRONT PAGE - Meg Bolton Meg.bolton@gat­ton­

GIV­ING birth to her first child was far from rou­tine for Gat­ton mother Lacee Buzza, but she said the sys­tem who sup­ported her couldn’t have been bet­ter.

At her 37-week scan, Ms Buzza was told when her wa­ters broke the um­bil­i­cal cord would pro­lapse, mean­ing she would have to give birth in a mat­ter of min­utes.

“We had four min­utes to have her de­liv­ered or she would die,” Ms Buzza said.

Liv­ing more than 40 min­utes from the clos­est hos­pi­tal pro­vid­ing birthing suites, go­ing home wasn’t an op­tion.

Ms Buzza was checked in to Ip­swich Hos­pi­tal and in­duced the fol­low­ing day.

She gave birth to her daugh­ter Zia on Au­gust 25, but the com­pli­ca­tions did not end there.

“The birth was easy com­pared to ev­ery­thing else that hap­pened,” she said.

“She was born pur­ple not breath­ing so they did CPR on her – 15 doc­tors came in to try and re­vive her.

“They didn’t have the ca­pac­ity to look af­ter her so they sent a re­trieval team of spe­cialised car­diac doc­tors to pick her up from Ip­swich and trans­port her safely to the neona­tal in­ten­sive care unit at the Mater hos­pi­tal.”

West More­ton Health Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Com­mu­nity and Ru­ral Ser­vices Melinda Par­cell said the health sys­tem op­er­ates closely to en­sure all pa­tients have ac­cess to the re­quired treat­ment.

“Those pre­sent­ing with se­ri­ous in­juries or ill­ness will be sta­bilised and trans­ferred to Ip­swich Hos­pi­tal or an­other spe­cial­ist fa­cil­ity,” she said.

Ms Par­cell said ba­bies are not birthed at ru­ral hos­pi­tals to en­sure women and their ba­bies have ac­cess to spe­cial­ist care and emer­gency surgery.

Dur­ing the birth, Ms Buzza sus­tained a cut artery, but to stay close to her new­born child, she was also trans­ferred to Bris­bane.

Be­fore Ms Buzza even ar­rived, Bris­bane Ron­ald Mcdon­ald House had ar­ranged ac­com­mo­da­tion for her and her part­ner to stay in while Zia re­ceived treat­ment.

“It was su­per scary, but it was re­as­sur­ing be­cause they had all of the right peo­ple in place to de­liver the best care,” she said.

Zia was ad­mit­ted to the Mater hos­pi­tal, where she stayed for three days be­fore be­ing trans­ferred to the Lady Ci­lento Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal for heart surgery.

Ms Buzza said the health sys­tem op­er­ated like a “well-oiled ma­chine.”

“The whole sys­tem is fan­tas­tic ac­tu­ally – ev­ery­one has a role to play and they all played it su­perbly. The (Lock­yer) Val­ley is an im­por­tant link in the chain,” she said.

Af­ter a week in Bris­bane, Ms Buzza and her part­ner Josh Martell were able to bring their daugh­ter home.

“My doc­tor Ash­leigh was given a plan to mon­i­tor her from here and if any­thing is wrong then we go straight back to Bris­bane,” she said.

While women in the Lock­yer Val­ley are re­quired to travel to give birth, West More­ton Health In­terim Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Med­i­cal Ser­vices Dr Eleri Car­ra­har said they were work­ing on mak­ing ser­vices ac­ces­si­ble.

“Across the past 12 months West More­ton Health has ex­panded its com­mu­nity antenatal ser­vice to de­liver more care closer to home,” she said.

It has not yet been con­firmed whether birthing ser­vices will be in­cluded in the re­gional-sized hos­pi­tal which will be built in the Lock­yer Val­ley, sub­ject to gov­ern­ment ap­proval.


TOUCH AND GO: Lacee Buzza holds her one-month-old daugh­ter Zia Martell.

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