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Haylee's tonsil troubles spark compassionate offer

Carmen Shipp discusses her daughter Haylee’s upcoming tonsillectomy with ear, nose and throat surgeon Dr Garrett Fitzgerald.
Carmen Shipp discusses her daughter Haylee’s upcoming tonsillectomy with ear, nose and throat surgeon Dr Garrett Fitzgerald. Nev Madsen

THE generosity of a long-standing Toowoomba institution has brightened Christmas for a Toowoomba single mother and her sick daughter.

Carmen Shipp thought her eight-year-old daughter Haylee would have to endure at least another four years of repeated bouts of tonsillitis after being told there was no way to push her name up the Toowoomba Hospital surgery waiting list.

Doctors had told Miss Shipp that Haylee needed a tonsillectomy three years ago but high demand had stretched the public system waiting list to seven years.

However, staff at St Vincent's Hospital offered to help after reading in The Chronicle last week of Haylee's plight.

After a few phone calls, the hospital arranged for Toowoomba ear, nose and throat surgeon Dr Garrett Fitzgerald to perform the procedure.

"I realise the Base (Toowoomba Hospital) has got a long waiting list," Dr Fitzgerald said.

Miss Shipp said the kind gesture was greatly appreciated.

"I wasn't expecting any of this to happen," Miss Shipp said.

"I was in shock.

"I cried all day.

She said Haylee was a bit worried about having the surgery but she would have her mother there to support her.

"I'm just overwhelmed because we've been through such a hard trot."

St Vincent's Hospital Toowoomba general manager Carl Yuile said the hospital was committed to providing compassionate and innovative care.

"As a Catholic health service we are especially committed to helping those in need through the healing ministry of Jesus," Mr Yuile said.

"We draw on the talents of our people and collaborate with others who share our vision and values.

"I would like to thank Dr Fitzgerald and our dedicated staff who have offered to help this family at a time of great need in their lives."

Topics:  st vincent's hospital, surgery, toowoomba hospital, waiting list


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