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Community & Business

25 August, 2023

Little Wings for little P.J.

The help of some much-welcomed wings has ensured 15-month-old P.J. from Armatree can receive the care he needs promptly, after he was diagnosed with laryngomalacia.

Laryngomalacia is an abnormality of the voice box (larynx) that leads to the inward collapse of the airway when air is drawn into the lungs (inspiration). Mum and dad, Amanda and Bruce, are well acquainted with their distance from the big smoke, but the daunting six-hour drive has been put at ease after receiving support from Little Wings.

The not-for-profit organisation provides free trans- portation services for families in need, and Amanda and Bruce couldn’t be more grateful. The team at Little Wings are working to close the gap on healthcare for regional and remote NSW, and P.J. and his family can see that they are doing just that.

P.J. has already undergone two major throat surg- eries during the first six months of his life. Recognising the challenges, the family spoke to a paediatric nurse who introduced them to Little Wings.

"I didn't think it was this easy - I didn't want to be a pain," expressed Amanda, reflecting on her initial reser- vations about seeking assistance.

"Little Wings is amazing, we appreciate all that you do for everyone out here.”

Bruce expressed his gratitude, stating, "I can't thank everyone enough. The opportunity to accompany my son to his appointments in Sydney holds immense significance for me and for all the families residing in the rural areas. The provision of organised and funded travel, coupled with the absence of the added burden of managing logistics while caring for an ailing child, enables both of us to dedicate our attention to our child's requirements. This brings a sense of solace during this exceedingly challenging period. Thank you, Little Wings from bottom of my heart.”

Despite the initial emergency support, P.J. has recently encountered further breathing difficulties. Amanda sought help from a local ENT specialist who identified continued weakness on the right side of P.J.'s throat. Due to the presence of scar tissue from previous surgeries, operating on his throat again poses risks to P.J.'s airway. Consequently, P.J. will undergo additional sleep studies and tests to manage his condition effectively. To date, P.J has completed three missions with Little Wings and is set to board many more with his ongoing treatment and medical concerns.

Clare Pearson, Little Wings CEO said, "Little Wings understands the importance of keeping families togeth- er during difficult times. Our mission is to support P.J. Bruce, and Amanda every step of the way, because we are in it for the long haul”.

“By alleviating travel fatigue, reducing financial bur- dens, and minimising time away from home, Little Wings ensures that the family unit remains strong throughout their medical journey and P.J has consistent access to the best possible care to see him thrive.” 

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