New BBC Alba programme witnesses the move of Yorkhill’s sickest children

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The Scottish Paediatric Retrieval Service provides a unique and vital service at the heart of Scotland’s NHS.

Operating 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, this team of specialist doctors and nurses are on call to ensure that critically ill children receive life-saving treatment wherever they are in Scotland.

Following this division of the NHS in Scotland, BBC ALBA series Cobhair Chloinne provides an insight into the remarkable work of the doctors and nurses charged with transporting seriously ill children to the major intensive care units in Glasgow and Edinburgh. And what’s more extraordinary is that the retrieval team must provide the highest level of life support while in transit often inside ambulances, helicopters, airplanes and rapid response vehicles.

In tomorrow’s episode (October 7), we witness one of the most unusual – but historic - tasks undertaken by the retrieval service: moving the entire Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at Yorkhill hospital, to the Glasgow’s new Royal Hospital for Children at the Southern General.

BBC ALBA follows the two day process, undertaken in June this year, to transfer 16 critically ill patients at Yorkhill to the new hospital across the River Clyde under the watchful planning and care of consultants Mark Davidson and Christina Harry. Patients include infants such as Olivia, who will be experiencing her first trip outside the hospital since arriving at Yorkhill seven months ago.

As well as the move from old to new units, we see more of the more of the standard yet lifesaving work that the Paediatric Retrieval Service conducts every day.

That includes the move of three year old Euan, who is critically ill with meningococcal septicemia, from Forth Valley Hospital in Larbert to Edinburgh’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children.

Cobhair Chloinne spent nine months in the company of the Paediatric Retrieval Teams based at Glasgow’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Yorkhill and Edinburgh’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children. We hear first-hand from the doctors and nurses who, day in day out, provide a life-saving services to the remotest parts of Scotland. They work closely with medical staff in rural communities ensuring children in those areas can receive the highest level of medical care, when they need it.

The show airs on BBC ALBA Wednesday, October 7 at 9.00pm