As if saving lives all day wasn't enough, staff on Royal Brompton’s Adult Intensive Care Unit (AICU) gave up their evenings last Thursday to help us launch a brand new appeal. Enhancing critical care at Royal Brompton is our campaign to raise £300,000 to support the build of two new intensive care isolation rooms.

We welcomed around 20 donors to attend a hard hat tour of the site, a resuscitation workshop and talks from Cliff Morgan, Trust Director of Critical Care, and Anoma Ginawardena, Deputy Matron on AICU.

Gill Raikes, our Chief Executive, introduced the appeal before handing over to Dr Morgan, who explained the need for the new rooms.

He said:

We simply need more isolation capacity. A fantastic amount of specialist care goes into looking after very ill people on the unit. With the threat of new germs such as candida auras and MRSA, we need to assume that every patient who comes to us has an infection, until we can prove otherwise. The four side rooms we currently have aren’t the right mix anymore.

Guests were then taken to see the building works by Lawrence Mack, Divisional General Manager, and Sam Wheeler, Project Manager. Architect Belen Francos explained how a lobby area between the corridor and the room will help tighten infection control and allow for the use of negative air pressure. Guests were shown plans for a private space for a family member within the room. It is hoped that this dedicated space will mean family members feel more welcome and not in the way of round-the-clock care. Learn more about this transformative appeal here.

A resuscitation workshop with the AICU team followed the tour. The team showed guests some of the machines used on the unit, including a hemofiltration machine and ventilator, before inviting them to try chest compressions on a dummy.

Gill Raikes said:

We were delighted to welcome donors along for this sneak peek of the new development, and were touched by some of their stories about loved ones receiving superb care on the unit. It was a special way to start our new appeal to help create rooms that are less daunting for relatives and more peaceful for patients, and I’d like to thank all the staff who gave up their time to give such fantastic demonstrations.

Among our guests was Ernest Marr, whose wife was treated on AICU earlier this year. She sadly passed away six months to the day of the tour. Mr Marr said:

I’m so pleased I came to see the unit coming on leaps and bounds.