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National Ambulance Service nurse-led children’s repatriation service wins award

 A group of 4 women and 1 man from the National Ambulance Service nurse-led children’s repatriation service at the award ceremony


“Feedback from CHI (Children’s Hospital Ireland) regional paediatric departments, and most importantly, patients and their parents, has been overwhelmingly positive,” according to Dr Cathy Gibbons, reflecting on winning an Irish Healthcare Centre Award in recent weeks.

The National Clinical Lead for IPATS (Irish Paediatric Acute Transport Service), Dr Gibbons said that the award was in “recognition of the work done to date,” adding that the entire team were “looking forward to a busy and exciting year ahead.”

The service is designed to safely bring children and teenagers back to their local hospital once they no longer require specialist Dublin-based care.

The IPATS Repatriation Service aims to provide care and support for children and families during a very stressful time. It also ensures a flow of children into and out of the specialist hospitals so that every child can get the most appropriate care when they need it most. It is part of the Critical Care and Retrieval Service (National Ambulance Service) known as NASCCRS.

Dr Gibbons further reflected on how the NASCCRS IPATS Nurse led repatriation team was “thrilled to win the Irish Healthcare Centre Award in the Child Health and Wellbeing category.”

The service commenced in November 2023 and to date has transferred 80 children from Children’s Health Ireland (CHI) hospitals to their local hospital. This has resulted in over 250 bed days being released back to CHI for use by children requiring urgent and critical care. 

IPATS has also been able to support the work of paediatric palliative care teams, with a number of transfers to the Laura Lynn Hospice and home for ongoing care. 

Learn more about the IPATS Repatriation Team