THANKS - for Saving Our Children; Our Debt of Thanks STATE-OF-THE-ART HOSPITAL One Year Ago This Week Hundreds of Youngsters Were Transported across Birmingham to the Brand New Diana, Princess of Wales Children's Hospital in Steelhouse Lane. DIANE PARKES Takes a Look at What the Move Has Meant to Patients, Parents and Staff

Birmingham Evening Mail (England), May 18, 1999 | Go to article overview

THANKS - for Saving Our Children; Our Debt of Thanks STATE-OF-THE-ART HOSPITAL One Year Ago This Week Hundreds of Youngsters Were Transported across Birmingham to the Brand New Diana, Princess of Wales Children's Hospital in Steelhouse Lane. DIANE PARKES Takes a Look at What the Move Has Meant to Patients, Parents and Staff


MORE than 300,000 children use the services at the Children's Hospital in Birmingham each year. They come from far and wide to benefit from the state-of-the-art facilities and high levels of care offered by the hospital and staff.

The move last May into the former General Hospital in Steelhouse Lane was a return home for the Children's Hospital which was originally founded in 1862 in the same road. It moved to a site in Ladywood in 1917, where it remained until last year.

In its new home it has 270 beds and employs around 2,000 staff. The new hospital was opened following a pounds 30 million investment, and an Evening Mail appeal which raised pounds 2.6 million for new equipment.

The new hospital has double the floor space of Ladywood, four additional intensive care beds, larger wards and more accommodation for families.

It also has a helicopter pad, increased parking, a dedicated accident and emergency department, state-of-the-art radiology equipment and an additional four operating theatres.

The new hospital has formed the cornerstone of a new series of BBC television's Children's Hospital, where millions of viewers have been taken behind its doors.

They have watched the tears and heartache, the pain and the joys which make up life at one of the premier children's hospitals in the world.

BOB and Berni Grindley have two reasons to be thankful to the Children's Hospital - their two children Russell and Donna.

Both of their children underwent major heart surgery at the hospital for totally unrelated conditions. Russell, aged 16, had a valve replaced last summer at the new hospital in Steelhouse Lane, more than ten years after his sister, Donna, now aged 15, had a hole closed and a heart by-pass at the old hospital.

A happy and loving family, father Bob, aged 45, says they owe more to the hospital than they can ever say or repay.

"People ask me what I would say to thank the hospital, but there are no words which could sum up what I want to say.

"Both of my children had congenital heart problems and they were unrelated. The chances of that are millions to one, but both my children are with us now thanks to the hospital."

The family have become known to millions after appearing in the BBC television series Children's Hospital. The film crew followed Russell's progress as he underwent his three-hour operation last July.

But the story goes back much further. The family were told when Donna was born she had a heart murmur and monitoring revealed a blocked valve. When her blood began to thicken doctors booked her in for a massive operation on her heart when she was just four. …

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THANKS - for Saving Our Children; Our Debt of Thanks STATE-OF-THE-ART HOSPITAL One Year Ago This Week Hundreds of Youngsters Were Transported across Birmingham to the Brand New Diana, Princess of Wales Children's Hospital in Steelhouse Lane. DIANE PARKES Takes a Look at What the Move Has Meant to Patients, Parents and Staff
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