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Make A Difference: The Caring Continues

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Famous International Dancehall Reggae artiste, Shaggy, stepped out last year and made a difference. Seeing the great needs of the Bustamante Hospital for Children, the only Paediatric Hospital in the English speaking Caribbean, he called on corporate Jamaica and held a benefit concert for the hospital and it was a tremendous success.

With the goal of bringing together Jamaican and International artistes from all genres to help raise awareness and funds for equipment needed at the hospital,  The Shaggy Make a Difference Foundation was able to purchase over J$20 million worth of equipment to the Bustamante Hospital For Children earlier this year. This money came not only from the great hands of corporate Jamaica, but also from the fingers of the common man.

After the festivities had ended and the contributions counted, Shaggy and the Board of the Bustamante Hospital for Children sat down and decided what equipment was most necessary and how best to spend the money. In the end the hospital was provided with an ENT (ear nose and throat) Microscope, Vital Signs Monitors, Volumetric Pumps, four Stretchers and a Blood Warmer.

The ENT Microscope is used primarily in the operating theatre during surgery on the inner ear or when removing foreign bodies from the auditory canal. It has proven to be very valuable where the surgeon needs the operating field to be magnified, which is important in surgery involving very small children.

The Vital Signs Monitor allows doctors to monitor the physiological parameters of any sick patient by providing not only continuous ECG monitoring but also continuous Saturation monitoring, which is a minimum standard for critically ill patients. Before receiving these Vital Signs Monitors three different machines would have had to be used to do the same tasks. Dr Lambert Innis, Consultant Anaesthetist and Head of the Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care at the Bustamante Hospital For Children believes that “these monitors are the way forward!”

The donation of Volumetric Pumps which are used to accurately measure and administer intravenous fluids was also of great importance, as were the four stretchers which allow hospital staff to transport the children around the hospital safely.

The Blood Warmer was deemed by Dr Innis as extremely important, especially when operating on a newborn where it is imperative to maintain a certain body temperature. Blood or IV fluids can be harmful to the patient if not administered at the proper temperature.

According to Dr Innis, the donation of equipment arrived at the time the greatest need: “At the time we considered these the most important pieces. The fact is that we still have a long way to go. We need more equipment for example pulse-oximeters, Phototherapy Lamps, Incubators and surgical equipment.”

The Bustamante Hospital for Children, the only Paediatric Hospital in the English speaking Caribbean, is still in desperate need of equipment necessary for saving the lives our children.  So join the Shaggy Make a Difference Foundation on January 2, 2010 on the lawns of Jamaica House or alternatively donate to the cause by visiting www.shaggymakeadifferencefoundation.org or calling 444-2452 and dare to make a difference.

Corporate sponsors Island Outpost and Wisynco Group through its brands: Coco Cola, Ocean Spray-Wata and Wata pledge to continue to help to “improve the lives of our children”.

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