The Early Birth Association (EBA)
Is a support group for the parents of premature and sick babies requiring treatment in a special care baby unit (SCBU). We are based at the Trevor Mann Baby Unit at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton. We collect and receive donations that are spent on the Trevor Mann Baby Unit in Brighton and the Special Care Baby Unit at the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath.
The group was formed 30 years ago with the help and advice of the Consultant Paediatrician who was very well aware of the need to offer practical help and support to parents enduring such an extremely traumatic experience. Technological advances have meant that there is a better outcome for babies, particularly those who are born prematurely. Babies born from 23 weeks gestation and weighing as little as 17oz. (half a bag of sugar) can grow and develop to become normal healthy children. Full term babies can also suffer severe problems and require intensive care.
We are all volunteers and are parents who have had experience of babies requiring specialist care. We visit the TMBU & PRH SCBU to introduce ourselves to parents and offer encouragement and hope during this very difficult time.
The Committee:Heidi Crawford – Co-Chair Person – TMBU
Michelle Miles – Co-Chair Person – PRH
Approximately half of these are from the Brighton area the remainder
from elsewhere in the country.
The Trevor Mann Baby Unit
Is a specialist unit caring for premature and sick babies following their birth. The unit has twenty seven cots, nine of which are designated intensive care, eight for high dependency and the remaining ten for special care. Some babies may stay on the unit for only a day, others may be there for up to six months.
The local health authorities of East Sussex, Brighton & Hove and West Sussex pay for the service provided. However, high quality medical and nursing treatment is very expensive and donations are essential to help buy additional equipment.
The Princess Royal Hospital
The PRH SCBU is staffed for 8 special care cots. The unit is one of two in the UK led by a team of Advanced Neonatal Nurse Practitioners (ANNPs), supported by consultant neonatologists. The ANNP team is supplemented by an Associate Specialist and Speciality Doctor.
Women likely to deliver at less than 34 weeks gestation, or whose baby is likely to require high dependency or intensive care, are transferred to the RSCH before delivery. There are facilities at PRH for short term ventilation and stabilisation of infants prior to transfer. Infants requiring short periods of high dependency care are routinely managed at PRH.