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Southampton Oxford Neonatal Transport

Southampton Oxford Neonatal Transport (SONeT) is a dedicated neonatal transfer service designed to move babies from one hospital to another for specialist care or transferring them nearer to home within the Thames Valley and Wessex network. We transfer babies needing all levels of care, from special care to intensive care.

Neonatal babyWe have a specially equipped ambulance and transport incubator, which allows us to provide intensive care on the journey. The transport team is made up of a nurse and a doctor or advanced neonatal nurse practitioner who are trained in caring for sick (and well) babies who are being transferred. 
The team are based at two hubs – one in Southampton and the other in Oxford. Newborns frequently need to move hospitals if they require increased level of care or specialist services. However, once their condition improves we try to get them back to their local hospitals as soon as possible as we know this is better for family life and on-going care. 
The Southampton hub of the SONeT team completes over 600 transfers per year and has capabilities to provide land and air transfers where appropriate.
Find out more information about SONeT here:
Help us buy additional equipment for this specialist service!
Equipment needed:
  • Zoll X defibrillator – This is a more detailed cardiac monitor and allows us to provide an electric shock to the heart should it be required. In neonates this is most commonly used to reduce very fast heart beats. The Zoll X defibrillator costs £19,000. 
  • Hamilton T1 Ventilator – At a cost of £18,000 this is the ventilator we use for land and air transfers. For babies who are struggling with their breathing we need to help them to get oxygen into their bodies and remove waste gases. We currently have one ventilator for the team but a second ventilator would allow for servicing and should there be an equipment failure, it is an essential piece of equipment for our transfers. 
  • MP5 Phillips monitor – This allows us to closely monitor the baby’s heart rate, respiratory rate, blood pressure and other parameters. Monitoring is particularly important during transfer, and costs £8,300. 
  • Braun infusion pumps – We use these to provide medications via syringe pumps to our babies. We currently have six pumps but we would like to expand this number to replace some of them and give us the option of dedicated flight equipment. Each pump costs £800 and we are asking for six pumps, along with the space station, which secures them to the base equipment. 
  • Phototherapy unit Neoblue – It is a frequent problem for newborns to have jaundice (yellowing of their skin). In most cases this can be managed without transferring the baby using phototherapy (light therapy). However, for those babies with very high blood levels it is sometimes necessary to move them to the Princess Anne Hospital in order to carry out an exchange blood transfusion to reduce their levels rapidly. If the levels are very high this can lead to permanent brain damage. We currently do not have a portable jaundice lamp but this would improve our service and allow us to provide some treatment whilst we are completing the transfer at a cost of £4,500.
  • Humidification Neo-pod T – This device humidifies (moistens) the oxygen we provide and reduces the drying to the baby’s nose and airways, making it more comfortable for them. The cost is approximately £3,500. Whilst we regularly humidify on land transfers we are currently unable to do so during air transfers without this equipment. 
To support this service, please contact Southampton Hospital Charity on 023 8120 8881.

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