Child and family information

The transfer of your child to intensive care is an extremely difficult time for you and your family. We will try to help you in any way we can.

Why does my child need to be transferred?

If a child becomes critically unwell requiring breathing support, blood pressure support, or other specialist help, the child’s doctor may ask for the child to be transferred to a Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). If children have specific medical needs (for example liver problems), we can also transfer them to a PICU that specialises in the care they need.

What is a retrieval team?

The retrieval team is made up of a doctor, a nurse and an ambulance crew. The doctor has specialist training in the management of ill children (Paediatrics) and is experienced in providing Paediatric Intensive Care. The nurse has a specialist qualification in Paediatric Intensive Care and further training in the transportation of critically ill children. The ambulance crew are trained in life support (paediatric and adult) and advanced driving skills.

How does retrieval work?

The local hospital calls KIDS. The referring doctor will then discuss the child’s condition and current treatments with the retrieval coordinating doctor. Our doctor will advise on further treatment strategies. The retrieval team will go to meet the child and transfer to the most appropriate PICU. The retrieval team provides a mobile intensive care bed for the child. Throughout the journey the child will continue to receive close observation and comprehensive monitoring.

Can a member of the family travel with the child?

Yes, KIDS is usually able to take at least one parent in the ambulance.  We also have mobile phone charging facilities and a complimentary refreshments available for you on board.

If you are driving, please DO NOT follow the ambulance closely as this is not safe.

Can I leave feedback about my experience with the KIDS service?

Yes!  Your feedback is very important to us.  Follow this link to the parents' and families' feedback page to learn how.