Last Friday night, my 18 month old daughter woke up hysterical. She was inconsolable, screaming, back arching like she had for so many months when she was suffering with silent reflux. Something was definitely wrong. I wanted to take her straight to A & E but my more rational other half suggested I hang fire.
I stayed up with her trying to calm and soothe her (something I find so much harder without the power of my boobs now I’m no longer breast feeding). After not much improvement and very little sleep, at 4.30am I sent an email to 13SICK.
This is not the first time I have used this service. It’s a national out of hours, bulk billed GP service that comes to your door. I first discovered its existence about 12 months ago when a neighbour mentioned it to me. I knew of such a service when I lived in the UK but wasn’t aware of it here in Australia until then.
I have now used the service 3 times and I can honestly not fault it.
As it was 4.30am and I didn’t want to wake my husband and 3 year old daughter I completed their online form. Minutes after hitting submit, I received a phone call to explain that the Dr’s started at 5.30am and I would receive a call from Dr Zac soon after.
Finally myself and my daughter passed out, the Panadol and exhaustion eventually taking over.
When I woke up at around 7.30am my heart sank as I saw I had a couple of missed calls starting at 6.41am and 2 messages from Dr Zac.
The first message read:
“Hi I have tried calling but no one picked up and no unit number was given. I will try again later. Dr Zac”
The second message read:
“Please call when awake”
Phew, he understood the exhaustion of having been up all night had taken over and he hadn’t given up on us.
I rang him straight back and within minutes he was at our front door.
He was professional, calm, helpful and reassuring. He confirmed my suspicions that my daughter had an ear infection and wrote her a prescription for antibiotics. He even checked my 3 year olds chest as she has had a bit of a cough.
And then he left.
I was reassured. My daughter was going to be ok, I had the prescription required to make her better – all this and I hadn’t even had to left my front door, better still I was still in my nightie. Even better than that, Dr Zac had understood our need for sleep, he’d shown patience, kindness and professionalism.
Thank goodness for the National Home Doctor Service and chance and Dr Zac.
So when I was offered the opportunity to support The Royal Flying Doctor Service promote their kids club to connect children with one of Australia’s most iconic organisations, I jumped at the chance. The Flying Doctors Service was established in 1928 and provides people in remote parts of Australia with their very own Dr Zac.
The free club will feature birthday greetings, regular newsletters in the mail and activities to provide children with an insight into the important work that the Flying Doctors has provided over the years.
Children aged between 5 – 12 years old are invited to join, with all registrations before 24th March putting them in the draw to win an iPad and a Pilots pack. Members of the Flying Doctor Kids Club will receive annual birthday and Christmas cards in the mail from mascot Flynn the Flyer, and regular newsletters featuring history, health and geography brain teasers, fun facts and a chance to learn about Aussie kids in remote communities.
Launched on Australia Day at Victoria’s Government House, the Flying Doctor Kids Club has re-established the time honoured tradition of receiving communications in the mail – a legacy which many parents and grandparents recall with affection.
“In an era of digital technology, it’s refreshing to show kids that traditional communications is still valued – and children really do love receiving personal letters in the post,” said Royal Flying Doctor Service Victoria section Chief Executive Scott Chapman.
“We know from our Look Up in the Sky! Education program in Victoria that children are also incredibly curious and inspired by information about other kids throughout Australia, and how the Flying Doctors helps them learn about Australia’s history and geography. We want to help parents continue to nurture their children’s interest.”
Mr Chapman added that plane travel and outback imagery is an exciting prospect for children, and the Flying Doctors is passionate about connecting rural and urban families through the free Kids Club.
The Flying Doctors has been once again been voted as Australia’s most reputable charity for five years in a row and has been providing aero-medical assistance and primary health care services since 1928. RFDS Victoria delivers air and road patient transport, primary health care programs such as diabetes, mobile eye and dental care and rural women’s GP services, as well as raising funds for emergency retrieval across Australia.
Today the RFDS attends over 295,000 patients annually, or more than 800 every day, performs around 37,000 aeromedical evacuations and conducts about 15,000 healthcare clinics per year.
To join the Royal Flying Doctor Service Kids Club:
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a registration form
THE FLYING DOCTOR KIDS CLUB FEATURES INCLUDE:
* A certificate of membership for all members to show their friends
* Annual birthday and Christmas cards in the mail from Flynn the Flyer
* Regular newsletters in the mail featuring fun facts, activities and updates
* A chance to win an iPad and Pilots Pack for one lucky winner who joins before 24 March 2016
* Membership is open to children 5 -12 years old living in Australia
* To connect with the Royal Flying Doctor Service on-line go to:
Please support this charity – everyone in Australia deserves the treatment and reassurance I experienced by their very own Dr Zac.