MacAlpine family forever grateful to the RFDS

MacAlpine family forever grateful for the Flying Doctor

Date published

21 Aug 2023

Two years ago, the beautiful world of the MacAlpine family from The Marra, took an unexpected and frightening turn, when then eight‑month-old Henry needed our urgent medical assistance.

Young Henry had suffered from an intussusception – where his intestine folded into itself – and his parents Ange and Will rushed him to the closest hospital, over 90 kilometres away at Brewarrina.

But, being a small medical facility, Brewarrina wasn’t equipped to deal with such life‑threatening cases.


Thankfully, our incredible emergency retrieval team, involving Flight Nurse Michael Cook, were able to get Henry and Ange to Dubbo Base Hospital for expert care.

“I felt much better once we were on board heading to Dubbo,” Ange recalled after Henry’s first episode.

"Michael monitored Henry and chatted to me, which was greatly appreciated in such a scary situation.”

Monitored by a team of nurses and paediatricians, Henry’s condition deteriorated and so was flown to Sydney by air ambulance, where the Randwick Children’s Hospital team managed to repair the intussusception.

“Thankfully, we haven’t had another episode since. They (the medical team) did say he should grow out of it by age five,” Ange explained.


The MacAlpine family will continue to closely watch Henry, but Ange said he is a “thriving, healthy, happy child.”

So appreciative of the Flying Doctor and their efforts, the MacAlpine’s, together with the wider The Marra community, are fundraising for the RFDS at the local Field Day event.

“They’ve supported our community on a number of occasions and we’re so grateful to have a local RFDS clinic once a month, which is amazing because we’re so far from medical help,” Ange said.

“For me and where we live, it’s comforting and reassuring to know that there is help.”