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"Outstanding paediatric team"

About: Northern Ireland Ambulance Service / Emergency ambulance response South West Acute Hospital / Emergency Care and Medicine Services South West Acute Hospital / Paediatric Services

(as a parent/guardian),

Our young daughter has been diagnosed with a condition called Wolfhirschorn Syndrome. She takes prolonged epileptic seizures and requires support from physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy.

Her seizures have resulted in her being admitted to hospital on a few occasions now.   Each time she has been rushed into hospital has been a very frightening experience for us as parents.

In May 2022 she took a prolonged epileptic seizure.

We wish to thank the paramedics that brought her to hospital safely that night and thank the team in A and E that worked to help get her seizures under control. You work in a very intense environment and we will be forever grateful for doing everything you could to get the seizures to stop.

We wish to thank the nurse on duty that night in particular who kept us reassured and informed us of everything that was going on as and when it was happening.

When we arrived distressed on the ward that night we were greeted by the  Community Paediatrician Dr. Mackin. We cannot put into words how relieved and grateful we were to see him on the ward .

Dr.Mackins composure and kindness as always, brought calmness to our situation. He kept us reassured, informed and up to date throughout those traumatic few hours.

We can never thank Dr.Mackin enough for not only his care that night but for the continued care he shows us each time we go to visit him.

He always has a listening ear and is kind and compassionate to our situation. He is so caring and always goes out of his way to not only look after our child but us as parents as well.

We wish to thank the whole staff on the Children’s Ward who work tirelessly day and night to give such good care for our child and our family when we are staying with them. They make us feel so welcome, they are so attentive, they keep us upbeat and are always there to listen to any worries or concerns might be having.

Whilst we would prefer as parents not to have to be in a situation where she requires medical attention in hospital we are always so grateful for the lovely atmosphere on the ward and for the excellent care she receives.

She was admitted to hospital again in May 2022. Again we wish to thank the paramedics that were on duty that night. This time she was a Covid patient. The paramedics took such great care of her, putting their own health at risk. We wish to thank them for ensuring her safe travel to hospital that night and for checking in with me, mum as I waited emotionally distressed in the car park as I too had Covid.

Thankfully on that occasion her seizure didn’t last too long and therefore her stay on the Children’s Ward was short. Again thank you to everyone  involved in her care on that occasion especially the day and night nurses and the auxiliary staff who put their own health at risk to look after her as a Covid Patient.

In  July she was admitted again. This time she had been transferred by NISTAR ambulance service from Temple Street. We had been holidaying in Athlone when she took a seizure. She was rushed to a hospital in Galway and then moved to ICU in Temple Street Children’s Hospital.

We want to give a special thank you to Dr.Mackin who liaised with Drs in Temple Street to ensure she was kept safe and well once again. It was such a welcome relief to learn that Dr. Mackin was working the weekend that we were also on Children’s Ward. Within a very short time of our arrival onto the ward Dr.Mackin was in our room chatting things over with us and putting a plan into place. We cannot thank him enough for all he does for our family. We value his opinion so much. He offers us reassurances, great advice and support and is always so ready to listen to our fears and anxieties. We are so grateful that he is our Community Paediatrician.

The staff on the Children’s Ward are second to none. The care they gave us after such a stressful experience the previous few days was as excellent as always. Dr Shannyn and Dr. Nicolette are so kind and caring and ensured our concerns were heard and acted upon.

You all give us such confidence on leaving for home and we hope each and every one of you who work here including auxiliary staff know how much we appreciate the work you do.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank the amazing work that the  epilepsy nurse Maura does too. She is always so welcoming and gives us great confidence to ensure we know how to help our daughter in those first crucial stages of a seizure. She works so hard on the background coordinating and organising things for us and we appreciate all she does.

Thank you also to Mairead , Eileen, Rosemary and Emma. You ladies do remarkable work, you are so good at your job, you are so approachable and form an excellent team.

We cannot thank you all enough for everything you do to support us.

Thank you to everyone who has ever been involved directly with our daughter's care in SWAH and for always turning a stressful situation into a positive experience.

Thank you for you continued hard work, your kindness and compassion you show us each time we meet you. You are a remarkable group of people .

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Response from Neil Gillan, Co-Production & Partnership Lead, Quality, Safety & Improvement, NI Ambulance Service 6 days ago
Neil Gillan
Co-Production & Partnership Lead, Quality, Safety & Improvement,
NI Ambulance Service
Submitted on 05/08/2022 at 14:35
Published on Care Opinion at 14:35

picture of Neil Gillan

Dear Lmcb,

Thank you for taking the time to share your valued feedback with us, detailing your considerable experiences of engaging with the services, including the NI Ambulance Service, NISTAR transfer and South West Area Hospital. It was particularly reassuring to learn about the care provided by the paramedics whilst your daughter was suffering with Covid. She is a very brave little girl. I would like to share your feedback with the NIAS staff involved in your daughter’s care, in order to do so I would need a few more details about the date, time and location of the call. If you would like to provide more details please contact me directly at

Best wishes


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