Patient and family


PICUThe retrieval service consists of a highly trained team who have had specialist training in the transfer of sick children from their local hospital to PICU.

The retrieval team is made up of a doctor, nurse and technician or driver.

Why does your child need our help?

We will have received a call from the hospital to which your child has been admitted. The initial management of your child has been delivered by the local team after discussion with PICU. Your child’s condition is sufficiently serious to require specialist treatment on a PICU and the retrieval service has been called to facilitate their transfer to the closest available bed in Oxford or Southampton.

We will always try to place your child in the unit closest to your home.  

If no beds are available in Oxford or Southampton, we will transport your child to the nearest available PICU bed.

What happens before we leave your local hospital?

After we arrive at the hospital your child has been admitted to, we will need to assess your child and take details about your child’s illness and what the doctors have done so far. We may need to spend some more time with your child carrying out further treatment, before it is safe to transfer them. Once we have done this one of retrieval team will come and talk to you about your child’s condition and what we have done to prepare them for transfer.

We will provide you with information specific to the unit to which your child is being transferred.  Directions, a map, contact numbers, and details about local facilities including parent’s accommodation will be provided.

Please feel free to ask us questions during this time, as we feel it is important that you fully understand what is happening.