Patients requiring continued cardiac and respiratory support now have access to life-saving equipment made possible by the sacrifice of fallen Victoria Police officers.

The Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation has funded a new Critical Circulatory Support Service for Box Hill Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit – a first for Melbourne’s eastern region.

This is the largest hospital project in Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation’s 30-year history of funding public hospitals.

Eastern Health Chief Medical Officer Dr Alison Dwyer is extremely appreciative of Blue Ribbon’s contribution, welcoming the addition of the Critical Circulatory Support Service, including ECMO machines and a staff training centre at Box Hill Hospital.

“This vital piece of equipment can be used when other treatments are ineffective, and also allows time for doctors to treat underlying illnesses and gives the patient’s body a chance to heal,” Dr Dwyer said.

The ECMO (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation) machine or Critical Circulatory Support Service circulates blood through the body using an artificial heart, removing carbon dioxide and adding oxygen to blood before it re-enters the body with an artificial lung, to support patients whose own heart or lung is not functioning properly.

Eastern Health will soon install a 20-metre police memorial plaque outside the entrance of Box Hill Hospital’s ICU, where the names of all Victoria Police Officers who have died in the line of duty are displayed, to act as a reminder that the price of the ECMO machine‘s existence extends far beyond the financial cost.

A dedication ceremony was held at Box Hill Town Hall on Thursday 19 September, and was attended by families of fallen Victoria Police officers.

The Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation has been supported by the Eastern Football League, Freemasons Victoria Foundation and many other businesses, local groups and individuals to make this donation possible.

Thank you!

Meet Jean-Pierre

Jean-Pierre is the first person to benefit from the new Critical Circulatory Support Service for Box Hill Hospital.