Get involved! Send photos, video, news & views. Text SWINDON NEWS to 80360 or email us
Making It Better: Joe’s doing fine after lightning strike
WHEN 12-year-old Joe Compton was struck by lightning outside his school and rushed to hospital it was his mum’s worst nightmare.
Emma Dean was faced with the prospect of visiting the Emergency Department without any knowledge of how her son was doing.
She was shown to a family waiting area and, thanks to the quick actions of the doctors and nurses, Joe is able to tell his story.
Now Emma, a mum of two, is supporting the Adver’s appeal to help raise £20,000 for the Great Western Hospital’s new children’s Emergency Department.
In October last year, Joe was waiting to be picked up outside the gates of Dorcan Academy when he was struck by a bolt of lightning that caused his heart to stop, burst his ear drums and caused severe burns across 22 per cent of his body.
Emma, 30, of Park South, feared the worst after she got the call from her dad telling her what had happened to her son.
“I got the call from my dad and I didn’t believe it to begin with, I thought it was a joke,” she said.
“He said he was coming to get me and we got to the hospital before the ambulance did.
“When I got there, I went to the main reception of the A&E department but he had not arrived at that time so they didn’t know about him. Someone found out, though, and I was taken to the relative’s room.
“I didn’t know what was going on when I was in that room but when he arrived they took me in to see him.
“I couldn’t get to the bedside because there were so many different nurses and doctors so I just stood at the foot of the bed watching them work.”
Building work on the new department began last week at the hospital and will include the creation of a dedicated children’s unit as well as a complete redesign of the Emergency Department, and Emma has welcomed the plans saying they would make the whole hospital experience far less daunting for children.
She said: “I think it is a really good idea to have a separate children’s department.
“I think it makes it less scary for the children because it cannot be a nice experience if they see adults waiting with bad cuts or broken bones.
“There also needs to be more to keep children entertained during the long waits. My daughter was not with us on this occasion but she has been with us before and it is difficult to keep them entertained.
“Joe has received a lot of support from individuals and companies since his accident and I think there are quite a few who would like to help with this appeal.”
We would like to hear from any parents who have had experience of the department with their children. Email us your stories at email@example.com, tweet us at @swindonadver or call 01793 501794.
How you can help
If you would like to make a donation to the hospital’s fund, visit the Just Giving page at www.justgiving.com/GWH-ED-Appeal or text GWED50 with your amount to 70070. People can also claim gift aid at no extra cost.
Alternatively you can donate by cheque or make a donation in person at the cashier’s office on the ground floor. You can also email or call the fundraising manager Hannah Persaud to talk about other ways to fundraise on 01793 605631 or via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cheques can also be made out to Great Western Hospital and sent to the Fundraising Manager, Fundraising Department, Trust HQ, Floor 2, Great Western Hospital,Marlborough Road, Swindon, Wiltshire, SN3 6BB.
Comments are closed on this article.