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Countdown helps bring new medical equipment to Christchurch

Countdown helps bring a new modern piece of medical equipment to Christchurch Hospital
A new respiratory body box at Christchurch Hospital will help Canterbury children with their breathing tests.

The paediatric body plethysmograph, the first in the South Island, and the only one in New Zealand using the latest ultrasonic technology, measures a child’s lung performance. It was purchased with a $123,000 donation from Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal and will be unveiled this Thursday at the hospital with 12-year-old Tylah-Ray Davidson, who lives with cystic fibrosis, demonstrating how a lung function test is performed.

The box allows for a fully integrated procedure that tests airway resistance and lung volumes, and will assist in the care of children who have any form or respiratory issue.
The machine can measure the size of a child’s lung, how well the lung can take in oxygen and measure their resistance to airflow. It will also allow medical staff to measure the effect of medication given to help breathing, says Respiratory Laboratory Scientific Director, Dr Maureen Swanney.

“With three trained paediatric respiratory physiologists and this new equipment we are establishing a centre of excellence in the respiratory laboratory which will benefit many children and their families.
“The body box will also allow us to set up paediatric clinics to ensure more children have better access to the appropriate testing and assessment of their respiratory function.”
In addition to the body box, the purchase of an Airwave Oscillometry System (AOS) allows for testing on children as young as three with minimal patient cooperation needed. Previously lung function could only be tested via spirometry, where children have to blow into a tube as hard as they can.

The Countdown Kids Appeal has helped raised more than $10.4 million over the last 10 years and their incredible efforts have helped numerous young patients and their families from Christchurch and around the country.
Appeal Chairperson, Ruth Krippner, says she is thrilled to see the benefits for Christchurch families as a result of the new plethysmograph.

“At Countdown we’re proud to help make a positive difference in the communities we’re part of, and are delighted to see this important piece of equipment being purchased thanks to our appeal and the fundraising efforts of our team, particularly here in Christchurch. It’s our hope that it will make life a little easier for patients like Tylah-Ray and her parents,” says Ms Krippner.

From 7 August - 29 October, Countdown stores are working alongside children's hospitals wards to fundraise around the country. From quiz nights, car rallies, cake stalls and raffle tickets , thousands of Countdown and hospital ward staff will be rallying their communities to support the Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal.

To donate, simply:

* Visit your local Countdown supermarket and donate at the checkout;

* Purchase a Countdown Kids Hospital Appeal wristband or raffle ticket in-store.

* Donate via online shopping

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