Don’t break hearts, say campaigners

Pictured at their home in Moorends is Kerry Singleton and her daughter Kerry (4). Picture: Tony SaxtonT6836TS
Pictured at their home in Moorends is Kerry Singleton and her daughter Kerry (4). Picture: Tony SaxtonT6836TS

SUPPORTERS of a under-threat heart unit, which a Doncaster mum is leading the fight to save, have met to discuss alternative options to shutting the vital facility.

Kerry Singleton, 31, of Moorends, and fellow campaigners have collected over 250,000 petition signatures against the closure of the children’s heart surgery unit at Leeds General Infirmary.

Thousands from across the region, including patients from Doncaster, have had life-saving treatment.

But a decision will be made in eight weeks and the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund (CHSF) is calling for patients, families and supporters to continue campaigning to keep the unit open. The alternative option would provide numerous benefits on a national scale, according to campaigners.

These include reduced journey times, provision of high quality care and delivery of multiple services under one roof.

Kerry’s daughter Sienna was six weeks old when doctors found her heart valves were the wrong way round, she had an undeveloped pumping chamber and a hole in her heart.

She had six hours of open heart surgery and a 16-hour operation. She still goes to the unit for regular checkups.

The NHS review means 11 children’s heart units in England will be reduced to six or seven.