Will you help bring an Ultrasound to the Mater’s Emergency Dept?


Your kindness today will mean diagnosis without delay and treatment for people in pain the very same day…


Have you ever had a problem you’d been living with so long you didn’t realise the solution was staring you right in the face?

It’s so obvious when someone points it out to you.

I’m Roisin, an emergency care nurse here at the Mater Hospital.

And I’m writing to you today because we have a big problem here in the emergency department. A problem that could be so easily solved with just one piece of equipment…

 … an ultrasound machine. That’s what we really need.

Please, will you give a gift today and help bring this vital piece of diagnostic equipment to the emergency department right where it’s needed?


Your gift can help save lives…


Roisin - Emergency Nurse, Mater Hospital

Roisin – Emergency Nurse

Put yourself in our busy emergency department on Friday, around 4 o’clock.

In comes Patrick. He’s in his late 80s. And you don’t need to be a doctor to know he’s in pain. The grimace on his face gets deeper with every shuffling step. After a few hours, Patrick has his initial nurse’s assessment with me.

He’s suffering with the most horrendous leg pain of his life. Immediately, I suspect he may have ‘Deep Vein Thrombosis’ (DVT). If you don’t already know, that’s very painful… and incredibly dangerous.

When you’ve a blood clot in your leg, it can travel all the way up your body to your chest or your brain and cause a massive stroke. It can even kill you.

What he needed was an ultrasound. Right away.

But the problem is, we have to refer patients like Patrick up to radiology. And by three in the afternoon, there’s no way we’re getting anyone up there, but for the most critical emergencies. On top of this, it was a bank holiday, and unfortunately, radiology has a reduced service on weekends.

It meant that Patrick’s trip to the Mater became a 4-day odyssey.

This frail man of 86 had to travel from his home to the emergency department every day for four days so he could be injected with a blood thinner.

…the only way to stop a clot from travelling up and causing untold damage

Please, will you rush your gift now and help put an ultrasound machine right here in the Mater’s emergency department?


I don’t mind telling you that I had a soft spot for Patrick straight away. He was such a sweetie about it all.

But because we couldn’t get him up to radiology for an ultrasound that Friday afternoon, Patrick had to come back on Saturday, Sunday and Monday before he could finally get an ultrasound scan and a diagnosis on Tuesday. By day three, he was saying — ‘I bet you’re sick of the sight of me by now’.

He was such a trooper.

But you could tell his cheer was masking real fear.

Patrick’s story isn’t a one-off. If you’re reading this in the afternoon, chances are someone is being sent home now because we simply can’t secure another ultrasound slot today.

And not only does a delayed diagnosis extend suffering and worry, but it also increases the risk of serious complications. We especially worry about putting elderly and vulnerable patients like Patrick on blood thinners…

If they fall and hit their head, it could cause a brain haemorrhage. But without a diagnosis — without an ultrasound — how can we start treatment?

But radiology is stretched, too. And each emergency patient we refer means somebody in a hospital bed might not get their scan that day.

That’s why your kindness is so very needed right now— so appreciated

For patients in pain, an ultrasound machine in the emergency department means diagnosis without delay and treatment that same day…

Mary and Barry - Ultrasound Team - Mater Hospital

Mary and Barry from the Ultrasound team

And it’s not just Deep Vein Thrombosis patients. Ultrasounds are needed to diagnose some of the most painful conditions you can think of —

 … gallbladders stones,

… kidney stones (like this one),

… testicular torsion,

… ovarian cysts,

… appendix ready to burst…

As a nurse, it’s my job —my duty — to help people when they’re in pain. So you can imagine how it feels to have to look a fragile older man in the eye, or a woman who’s doubled over in pain, and tell them…

I’m so sorry, but you’re going to have to come back tomorrow for your ultrasound.”

Mary, our ultrasound specialist, told me about a young man a few weeks ago who came in at around 9pm with a testicular torsion. And yes, that’s as painful as it sounds…

 He waited here all night so he could get his ultrasound in the morning.

With an ultrasound in our emergency department, when someone like Patrick, or this poor gentleman comes to us in pain, I’ll be able to say — “Let’s take you over for an ultrasound right now and get you some answers… follow me, Sir…”

Isn’t this the kind of compassionate care, rapid diagnosis and treatment you’d want for yourself and the people you love?

Your kindness right now brings us closer to that goal. Please, will you give a gift today?.

If you’ve ever been to the Mater’s emergency department you know the relief of feeling in safe hands… the feeling of relief that answers are on their way.  We already have a CT scanner and X-Ray machine. Now we need an ultrasound scanner to complete the circle of care we can provide…

…your kindness today would mean that no matter the day of the week or time of day — we can provide the very best urgent care for any and every patient who walks through our doors in pain.

Please, will you help get an ultrasound into the emergency department?.

Thank you for your kindness, your compassion, and for giving if you can,

Roisin Emergency Nurse

Nurse Roisin

Emergency Nurse, Mater Hospital


Thank you for being the heart of our hospital and for giving what you can.

Patient Stories

We are privileged to meet some remarkable and inspiring patients that have spent time getting better in the Mater Hospital, and on many occasions, the treatment they received has saved their lives. Please take a moment to read their stories.


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