‘It was simply terrifying. We were living every parent’s nightmare. We had no idea what was happening to our baby and if he would be ok.’

When Lucca Beadle was just 12 days old his mum, Laura, was sure something was wrong.

Within minutes of their arrival at the Horton General Children’s Ward, Lucca had collapsed, and the family’s life was turned upside down. Lucca was immediately put on a ventilator and tested for COVID-19 and sepsis.

Dr Raj Anantharaman was in charge of Lucca’s care that day. When Laura mentioned that there had been concerns during her pregnancy that Lucca had a minor heart issue, Dr Raj organised an X-ray and it became clear that Lucca was very ill indeed.

Laura and her husband James were full of praise for the way Dr Raj and the nursing team on the Horton Children’s Ward responded:

‘They’ve been amazing, nothing was ever too much trouble. They showed kindness, empathy, and huge support for Lucca and also for us as a family. The nurses never left my side and they made sure we knew exactly what was going on.’

Lucca was quickly transferred to Southampton General Hospital for heart surgery – a repair to his aorta – and even while they were in Southampton, Dr Raj stayed in daily contact with the family:

‘The care we have received has been incredible, but I really do think Dr Raj saved Lucca’s life and his kindness throughout has meant so much to us.’

Lucca has now been diagnosed with a series of complex congenital heart conditions. Although it’s a long road ahead, Laura and James are finally beginning to see some improvement in his health.

To show their thanks to the Horton team, the family has been fundraising amongst the local community in Chipping Norton, and through a charity auction, with donated items from David Beckham and Jeremy Clarkson. 

For more information on their fundraising event click here

Dr Raj Anantharaman told us: ‘I am very humbled to hear such kind words from Lucca’s parents. I was, of course, only one part of the team who looked after Lucca that day and we are all so pleased to hear he is doing well. I cannot thank his parents enough for their kindness in organising the fundraising for the ward.’ 

If you would like to support the hospital that has cared for you or a loved one, call 01865 743444 for advice and support.