Nurses at Oregon Health and Science University are raising money for premature infants at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital — one step at a time.
During the Nike Hood to Coast Relay, the OHSU team raised about $3,500 and expect to raise another $3,000.
The idea was inspired by Ashleigh Mackay, a Doernbecher patient weighing just more than 1 pound at birth. After a thriving start, she lost part of her intestine to necrotizing enterocolitis. Ashleigh’s health declined quickly, and she passed away in February 2001 after 13 months.
“It was clear that she had touched a tremendous number of people,” says her father, Richard Aldersea. “It was a call for us to focus on the preemie community.”
That focus came in the form of the Ashleigh Mackay Memorial Fund, established to support preterm infants and their parents at Doernbecher and Exempla St. Joseph Hospital in Denver, Colo., where Ashleigh was born.
For more information about the fund, visit www. manuforti.org. To make a donation online, visit www.doernbecher foundation.org.