My Wish charity launches Every Heart Matters appeal for new cardiac unit
- Credit: Archant
A charity supporting West Suffolk Hospital has launched its biggest ever fundraising campaign in a bid to fund a diagnostic unit at a new cardiac centre being built at the Bury St Edmunds site.
The My WiSH Charity, which supports 90 funds connected to the hospital, has launched the Every Heart Matters appeal – with a target of £500,000 to pay for the new unit.
The appeal – which is being backed by The Mercury – will support the £5.7million scheme to make West Suffolk Hospital a “one-stop shop” for cardiac services and includes plans for a new cardiology lab in Bury St Edmunds.
Frankie Dettori, who was at the Bury St Edmunds hospital for the launch event on Monday, will act as ambassador for the appeal.
He said: “My sister used to work at this hospital, and as a local boy for 31 years, I wanted to help out.
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“We’re hoping to raise the half a million and get people donating, but also raise awareness.
“More than 500 people have a heart attack each year, so to get all the services under one roof will make a huge difference.
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“If my involvement can raise awareness of the campaign, then that can only be a good thing – and everyone’s a winner.”
The new unit will allow patients to undergo more complex procedures, such as the fitting of pacemakers, in Bury, rather than be transferred to Papworth Hospital in Cambridgeshire or elsewhere.
Pegah Salahshouri, 40, lead consultant cardiologist at the hospital said the proposed build will allow cardiology services to be developed at the trust enabling more complex procedures to take place.
She added: “For example, we will be able to fit pacemakers and expand the current coronary catheterisation.
“Patients who currently have to be transferred elsewhere for these procedures will be able to have all of their care here at the West Suffolk Hospital.
“This appeal will help to make a huge difference to the population of the West Suffolk Hospital.
“Our patient population is more elderly and they are consequently going to have more problems but we will be able to deal with them here instead of referring them on to another hospital. Being able to do that is going to be incredible.
“The appeal is an exciting opportunity to create somewhere over and above the norm, better than average, a place that will exceed expectations.”
A Newmarket man who suffered a heart attack last year has thanked staff at West Suffolk Hospital for the treatment he received.
Chris Pelloe, 69, of Derby Way, was admitted to the Bury St Edmunds hospital for five nights last summer after his wife, Estrellita, called for an ambulance following heart attack symptoms.
Mr Pelloe was told he had an enlarged heart and had to be fitted with a pacemaker at Papworth Hospital, Cambridgeshire, in January.
He said: “The staff were wonderful, I was given first class treatment and nothing was too much trouble for them.
“Don’t get me wrong Papworth is fantastic but it’s not the easiest place to get to and it would have been so much easier if everything was carried out at West Suffolk.
“For the hospital to have the new centre is absolutely vital for the ease of patients locally as everything will be in one place.”
To donate, visit the My Wish Charity’s fundraising page here or text EHMA17 £10 To 70070.
For more information on the My WiSH Charity, click here to visit their website.