Mum’s praise for lifesaving service 

Bella Saker with her mum, Lucy, dad, Grant, and brother, Sonny.
Bella Saker with her mum, Lucy, dad, Grant, and brother, Sonny.

A mum has praised the Children’s Air Ambulance and said her daughter may not be alive today without it. 

When she was a baby, Bella Saker needed open-heart surgery and was flown by the Doncaster-based ambulance service to a hospital for lifesaving treatment.

Bella was at her grandparents house in Ipswich with her mum and dad, Lucy and Grant, when she stopped breathing. She began to breathe again, but her skin was grey and the couple rushed her to the hospital.

Diagnosing her problem was difficult, but a scan of her liver and heart revealed that the veins from Bella’s lungs to her heart were not connected properly.

Her heart was failing to function properly and she urgently needed open-heart surgery.

This procedure needed to be carried out by the world-leading cardiac unit at Leeds General Infirmary, but that was over 150 miles away.

That’s where the Children’s Air Ambulance was able to help out.

Working with Embrace, the Yorkshire & Humber Infant & Children’s Transport Service, the helicopter flew Bella to the hospital in just 57 minutes - a journey that would take nearly four hours by road. Bella was taken straight into intensive care and then into surgery for a six hour operation.

Lucy said: “I don’t know if Bella would be here, were it not for the Children’s Air Ambulance.

Bella, now aged 6, is full of life and has got spirit. She showing no signs of letting her difficult start in life affect her in the slightest.”

The Children’s Air Ambulance are holding a race evening at Doncaster Racecourse on Saturday, July 20.

E-mail Sharon.Evans@theairambulanceservice.org.uk for more information about the event and to book your tickets.