Call to proud parents for calendar babies

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A Hemel Hempstead company is calling on parents to put their babies forward for a special calendar.

Draeger Medical UK Limited, medical technology specialists, are appealing for candidates for the Baby Heroes 2016 calendar, which celebrates those born prematurely.

The calendar aims to shine the spotlight on the deserving babies who have overcome various challenges associated with being born too soon to go on and live happy and fulfilling lives.

For the last few years, Babyfirst.com, an online-resource supported by Dräger that focuses exclusively on neonatal care, has highlighted the inspirational stories of premature infants from across the globe in the Baby Heroes calendar and it is planning to do the same in 2016.

One of the youngsters featured in the 2015 edition was Hugh Hunter who was born at 24 weeks and 6 days weighing just 1lb 7oz while his family was on holiday in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

He had patent ductus arteriosus surgery and flew home to St George’s Hospital in London at only 56 days old. He spent 373 days in the hospital, enduring a grade 4 intraventricular haemorrhage, three bouts of necrotising entercolitis, many respiratory arrests, and lots more before coming home on

ventilation by tracheostomy.

Hugh, who is now three years old, is developing amazingly well and his parents, Ian and Louise Hunter, say he has a naughty sense of humour.

Ian said: “Hugh is doing great now. He’s now only on the ventilator overnight and has started walking. In fact he recently started going to nursery which he really enjoys.

“It was a great surprise to be featured in the calendar. We’re proud to see him in print and it gives us a chance to reflect on how well he’s doing. We gave a copy of the calendar to the staff at St George’s Neonatal Unit as a small thank you for their wonderful care.”

Luke Bourdillon, sales and marketing manager for Neonatal Care at Draeger Medical UK, is now encouraging parents and caregivers to nominate any premature babies who have defied the odds to live a happy life.

He said: “The Baby Heroes calendar gives parents the opportunity to celebrate the resilience of their children who, despite a challenging and uncertain start to life, overcame the hurdles and went on to grow into happy youngsters enjoying fulfilling lives.

“It is also hoped that this will help raise awareness of the issue of prematurity, which affects millions of babies around the world each year. The BabyFirst website provides an unrivalled service for both clinicians and parents of premature babies by providing information and support.”

Babyfirst.com is an online-resource focused exclusively on neonatal care. It supports clinicians and parents of premature or sick infants with practical information, making it easier to guide their baby in its early stage of life. The website is supported by Dräger, an international leader in the fields of medical and safety technology.

The deadline for nominations is Friday, July 31. To nominate a Baby Hero, visit www.babyfirst.com

Visit www.draeger.com/neonatal-care