Young Aimee Brady from Magherafelt has officially opened a new specialised unit aimed at helping children with heart defects.
The 10-year-old ‘cut the ribbon’ with Ulster and Ireland rugby captain Rory Best at the Children’s Hospital at the Royal Victoria in Belfast on Thursday.
The launch of the new Children’s Heart Centre heralds a new era of care for children with congenital heart disease in Northern Ireland - that was the message from leading local children’s heart charity, the Children’s Heartbeat Trust.
The charity has welcomed the completion of the new facility at the Children’s Hospital, and have highlighted the direct benefits it will bring to many children and their families.
Aimee has a complex congenital heart defect called Double-Inlet Left Ventricle with Pulmonary Atresia and has undergone 3 open heart surgeries in her life so far.
Aimee was placed on the UK heart transplant list in January of this year and, until a suitable heart donor becomes available, has to stay in hospital.
For the last 18 weeks Clark Clinic at the hospital has been home, and will be until she has her transplant.
Aimee first came to the public’s attention in 2015 when she featured in the charity’s ‘Ever Been Heartbroken?’ campaign.
Speaking at the opening, Children’s Heartbeat Trust chief executive, Sarah Quinlan, said Aimee’s circumstances highlight the continued need for world-class healthcare provision in Belfast, where the paediatric cardiology team looked after some of the sickest children.