The Children’s Heart Federation is launching a new national information campaign directed towards parents and medical professionals.
The Think HEART campaign aims to empower and inform parents, as well as better educate medical professionals about the key early signs of a possible heart problem in children.
There are five easy to spot signs to help parents identify if their child may have a heart problem and to make them Think HEART giving them the confidence to raise the issue with their doctor or a health professional. Heart problems go undiagnosed in far too many children and Think HEART will increase early diagnosis and help to save children’s lives.
Heart rate – too fast or slow (normally 100 to 160 beats per minute)
Energy – sleepy, quiet, too tired to feed or falling asleep between feeds
Appearance – is your baby a pale, waxy, dusky, blue or grey colour?
Respiration – breathing too fast or slow (normally 40 to 60 breaths per minute)
Temperature – cold to touch (especially hands and feet)
What you can do to help
We are looking for community campaigners to help us spread the word about our Think HEART campaign. We need your help to raise awareness of congenital heart problems and to help increase early diagnosis. You can help us simply by talking to family members, friends and colleagues about the campaign and asking them to get involved too. You can share your story with us to help make the case for the need for early diagnosis of heart problems.
You can also help spread the message to other parents by putting up posters at key places in your local community such as at community centres, Sure Start centres, GPs surgeries, playgroups and primary schools or wherever parents might go and meet. If you can help with the campaign and you’d like us to send you a campaign pack with posters and flyers please email email@example.com or call 0300 561 0065.
Alex and Georgina Smith’s Story
Alex Smith’s daughter Georgina was born with a heart problem which went undetected until she was almost two and a half. Georgina’s condition was missed at the 20 week scan during Alex’s pregnancy as well as at a number of other occasions where Alex took Georgina to see medical professionals due to her concerns about Georgina’s health. Georgina had a number of the signs of a possible heart problem which are included in the Think HEART message.
“This campaign is such a great idea. We really understand the importance of early diagnosis and how our lives would have been so different in the early days of Georgina’s life if we had known what was really wrong with her. “It was so stressful having a sick child, knowing there was something wrong with her but not knowing for almost two years that it was her heart. Even though as a mother I had bought up my concerns with a number of medical professionals, they didn’t spot the problem as they weren’t fully aware of these conditions”.