Archie funding has enabled the NHS to upgrade from entry-level incubators (c. £18,000 each) to “Giraffe” or “Leo” incubators (c. £40,000 each). We have also funded ventilators, oximeters, resucitaires and many other highly specialised items, all of which make it easier for nurses and doctors to care for the most fragile babies with reduced physical movement and, as a result, significantly less trauma for Neonates.
“The giraffe incubators have little windows to open and you can hold your baby’s little hands, run your fingers on their head and touch the hairs on their back. If your baby can’t get out of the incubator, the top comes off and the sides come down so you can cuddle your baby without taking them out. I did this a couple of times with Eddie and instantly felt the bonding.” – Leah
Archie funds 17 breast pumps in the Neonatal Unit. These are used by mums at the Unit, and in some cases at home, so they can express themselves regularly for their babies. Increasingly our mums are expressing at the incubator or cot side and these pumps will enable more mums to do so. Expressing by their baby helps tremendously with the milk supply and volumes obtained.
We also provide cool bags for Mums who have to transport their expressed breast milk from home to the Unit.
“The breast pumps were a saviour for our family as Evie-Mae couldn’t be fed from myself for the first 3-7 days. It was amazing that I could still have a way to give our little warrior my milk. I also managed to donate over a litre of my milk to other families that needed it as I couldn’t take it home to Shetland with us. It really is an invaluable service.” – Rachel
No one plans to be in the Neonatal Unit which is one of the reasons why Archie Welcome packs are so appreciated by families at the Unit. The pack contains useful information and a range of practical items including a small gift for baby and a journal and pen for parents so they can record their thoughts and feelings and their baby’s progress through the ward.
Archie provides a suite of postcards that mark different baby milestones, ranging from “my first photo”, to “my first feed” all the way to “my first poop”! Although a small gesture, they provide a forever keepsake for those treasured moments.
We know how traumatic it can be when babies are whisked away to the Neonatal Unit, sometimes before mum and dad have even set eyes on their precious bundle of joy. Archie funding enables neonatal nurses to take and print “baby’s first photo” for new parents to help in these traumatic situations.
“Niamh’s first photo was funded by Archie. It was only something little, but it meant a lot to me, especially because I couldn’t be with her at all times. I still carry the photo everywhere.”
Kimberley, Niamh's Mum