Saving baby Kaleb

Baby Kaleb

Rarely a season passes without Mother Nature springing a nasty surprise on us.

You may recall in 2013, Australia’s east coast was experiencing torrential rain that saw many thousands of square kilometres of land underwater.

And in the stranded town of Biloela, 10 day old Kaleb was becoming increasingly unwell.

“When Kaleb was born, he used to sleep for three hours before waking up and feeding. But 10 days later, that changed. He was asleep for five hours at a time, and when I woke him up to try and get him to feed, he wasn’t interested. He would just make this coughing, gagging noise,” mum Lori remembers.

Graphic: Lori and Kaleb

Concerned about his listlessness, Lori took Kaleb to their town’s small community hospital.

The nurses at the hospital did their best to stabilise Kaleb but the truth was, they were in the middle of a flood, almost 150 kilometres from the intensive care Kaleb desperately needed.

A call was made to the Flying Doctor and an aircraft was dispatched within minutes. Kaleb was rushed to Rockhampton Hospital, where a team set to work stabilising his condition. After a few hours, Lori was told her son was out of immediate danger, but that surgery was required to fix a serious defect in his heart.

All this happened some time ago. And I am happy to tell you that Kaleb has made a stunning recovery. In fact, his doctors can see no reason why Kaleb shouldn’t grow up to live a normal, active life.

It's important we recognise that Kaleb's predicament is not unique. Thousands of people living, working and travelling in rural and regional Australia experience equally urgent medical emergencies each year. And in many cases, the Flying Doctor is their best chance of survival.

We never know when the next fire, flood or drought will strike, but its people like you who provide hope to the communities we serve.

By making a kind donation today, you’ll be ensuring we have the equipment, medical supplies and expert training needed to save more precious lives like Kaleb’s. Thank you.