Heart appeal brings in the cash

THANK you all so much for having hearts of gold!

THANK you all so much for having hearts of gold!

A whopping �11,000 has been raised by The Evening Star's generous readers for the Have a Heart appeal.

There has been an overwhelming response to the appeal, launched last month, which aims to help Ipswich Hospital develop state-of-the-art heart care facilities.

In the space of just a few weeks, donations have been flooding into the Star's office, from cheques in the post to coins in our collection box, and the money continues to come, with the total already exceeding �11,200.

The appeal is asking for just one pound from every person who may need care at Ipswich Hospital's cardiac department in the future - which would collect around �350,000.

If Ipswich Hospital had a specialist heart attack centre, emergency patients would not have to be taken outside the county for care.

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Nigel Pickover, the Star's editor, said: “We have been overwhelmed by this amazing response to our appeal and I thank everyone for their generosity.

“I am proud that The Evening Star is leading the way to make sure we are offered not just a better service, but the absolute best.”

Among those kind folk who have given up their hard-earned cash to help is The Framlingham & District Probus club, who donated �50.

Chairman Peter Smith, said: “We're all pretty old and creaky and might need the unit. The members thought it was a good idea so we gave some money.

“We have around 40 members and thought �50 was just over �1 each. We wanted to be generous and help the hospital.”

The residents of Clarkson Court Retirement Home also gave �20 from their social fund after hosting a quiz evening

Mike Manly, treasurer of the fund, said: “We decided to give the winnings to the Evening Star appeal. Most of the people here are elderly and felt that they may need the facilities locally one day. One or two have heart problems and they all want the best for Ipswich Hospital.”

To support the 'Have a Heart' appeal send cheques made payable to Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust to Have a Heart, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN, or donate money in person at the Star's Ipswich offices.

Background to Have a Heart appeal

Since September 1, serious heart attack patients in Suffolk are being sent to high-tech primary angioplasty centres in Norwich, Cambridge and Basildon, which means journey times are longer and the chances of survival have decreased.

The Evening Star has been campaigning for a primary angioplasty centre to be set up in Ipswich so residents have the best level of care possible and don't face long journeys for treatment

After successfully changing healthcare policy with our campaign, we have now launched the 'Have a Heart' appeal, which is raising money to help set up a catheter laboratory at Heath Road

The lab will originally be used to treat non-urgent heart operations but could eventually be expanded into primary angioplasty

PAMELA Hoy, of Playford Road, Ipswich, wonders what chance of survival her husband, Harry, would have had if he had been taken outside the county when he suffered a heart attack last year.

Mr Hoy, 82, a great-great grandfather, suddenly got pains in his chest one evening in April last year and his wife immediately called the ambulance.

He was taken to Ipswich Hospital where he was kept in for ten days, before being transferred to Papworth Hospital's specialist centre for angioplasty, which involves using a balloon to clear blocked arteries.

Mrs Hoy, 79, who has made a donation to the Have a Heart appeal, said: “If he had been sent to Norwich that night on that terrible road, the outcome may have been far worse.

“He was taken to Ipswich Hospital for ten days, then transferred to Papworth for angioplasty when he was stable enough to take the journey.

“It would be better to have angioplasty at Ipswich and we must all give as much as we can afford.”

It was the first heart attack Mr Hoy suffered and he has since made a good recovery.