Epsom Hospital's Special Care Baby Unit expressed their thanks to campaigners after a new machine that will help give newborns more gentle care was presented to staff there.

The Epsom Medical Equipment Fund (EMEF) has been led by indomitable campaigner Bess Harding for a number of years, and like many times before managed to fundraise in the community the money to purchase and donate the new machine to staff recently.

June Irvine, an Epsom and Ewell resident for over 40 years who was involved, presented the £815 'Astodia' Vein Finder to Senior Sister Gerry Cotter at Epsom General.

The machine is a handheld tool that makes easy the process of cannulation i.e. finding a vein and inserting a cannula for care.

The procedure is especially difficult with new born babies, and can cause distress, but the way the machine works streamlines the entire process by shining a very bright light from underneath the hand which highlights where the veins are.

"The Special Care Baby Unit at Epsom General Hospital were grateful to accept an 'Astodia Vein Finder' from the Epsom Medical Equipment Fund," a spokesperson said. "A donation was made to the fund by June Irvine which has supported this purchase. Matron Caroline Payne and Senior Sister Gerry Cotter, appreciate the generosity of the donor and the assistance of Bess Harding and her team to make this possible."

The donation was the latest in a huge line of equipment donated to Epsom Hospital by the EMEF fundraisers, who have raised over an estimated £5 million after forming in 1979.