Published on: 06/29/2021
A generous $1 million donation is supporting a new, state-of-the-art piece of medical equipment for cardiac patients at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital. The technology was possible because of the generosity of South Florida residents Howard and Debbie Belford, whose granddaughter had once received live-saving surgery at the hospital. (Watch video)
The new Spectrum Medical Quantum Heart Lung Machine helps doctors anticipate and prevent any complications in real-time during pediatric heart surgery. The equipment is designed to detect any changes during the surgery, react within a split second, and intervene to prevent potential serious complications. This gives the Nicklaus Children’s surgical team an extra edge to ensure patients undergoing surgery have the best outcomes.
“This is revolutionary for Nicklaus Children’s Hospital and an enormous safety net for children undergoing surgery,” says Dr. Redmond Burke, director of the Division of Cardiovascular Surgery at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital. “We wouldn’t have this technology without the generosity of families like the Belford’s who wanted to help more families receive the same amazing care that their grandchild received here.”
The Belford’s granddaughter, Ella, was diagnosed at birth with tetraology of fallot, a rare condition caused by the combination of multiple heart defects. Within the first ten weeks of her life, Ella underwent life-saving surgery at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, and today, she is a happy, healthy 4-year-old.
“No parent or caregiver should witness an infant or child fighting for their life. We are lucky to have a place like Nicklaus Children’s, performing miracles every day to save lives. The team definitely saved our Ella’s life,” said Debbie Belford. “We wanted these amazing surgeons and health care specialists to have the best equipment and technology at their fingertips so they can help many more babies!”
The piece of equipment is now in use inside the operating suites at Nicklaus Children’s Heart Institute.