The story of Haley Bills, shared by her mother, Ashley
Our daughter, Haley, had to be taken to MUSC unexpectedly when she was one day old. During a routine screen and an echocardiogram that followed, a significant heart defect was discovered.
Haley was taken by ambulance right away by the Prisma Health Pediatric Transport team to the Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (PCICU) at MUSC. That day was a whirlwind, but thankfully Lexington Medical Center caught her condition in time. She was given the medication she needed to keep her heart pumping blood to where her body needed it. In the next few days, we learned Haley has a condition called an Interrupted Aortic Arch (IAA) and two holes in her heart called a VSD and ASD. Her IAA condition is extremely hard to catch in utero, which is why we didn’t know about it until after birth.
Haley had open heart surgery at 10 days old; without surgery, her body would not have been able to survive. July 1 was her surgery date, and her surgeon was able to completely repair her aortic arch so it can pump blood to the lower half of her body and patched her two holes. She spent another two weeks in the hospital, recovering and learning to eat with a bottle. Since leaving MUSC, we go to routine visits to her cardiologist at Prisma Health Children’s Hospital—Midlands, Dr. Margaret Gray, for EKGs to ensure her heart is growing properly. We are happy to report Haley is healthy, and her doctors believe she will continue on that path. We are very thankful for all her doctors and nurses at Lexington, Prisma Health—Midlands and MUSC.
I accompanied Haley in the critical care ambulance to MUSC. The driver and two nurses were amazing. Her nurses monitored Haley very closely, and the driver kept me talking during the drive with any questions that I had. I didn’t know there was the need for pediatric ambulances. I always assumed everyone used the same, as I had never had to ride in one before that day. I am excited that Prisma Health Midlands Foundation is raising money for a new critical care ambulance for critical children in the Midlands.
Prisma Health Midlands Foundation’s “New Wheels For Precious Cargo” campaign will fund a new critical care ambulance for Prisma Health Children’s Hospital—Midlands. Children like Haley who need to be transported from the Midlands to MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital in Charleston for a heart procedure, will be transported in the new ambulance.