Babies treated at UVA’s pediatric cardiology unit celebrate coming home from hospital

(Photo courtesy Kimberly Pitts)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WRIC) — You may remember a story we did earlier this year about baby Finley Noah, or Finn.

10-month-old Finn was a heart patient at the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at The University of Virginia Children’s Hospital. He was born missing five critical parts of his heart in addition to several other cardiac conditions. He’s undergone ten surgeries and has been hospitalized most of his little life.

In early August, Finn finally came home.

Finn’s mom, Kelly Blumenthal, has spent a lot of time in the PICU at UVA’s Children’s Hospital. Along the way, she met parents going through similar situations with their tiny children, including local mom Kimberly Pitts, whose 3-month-old daughter, Savannah, underwent open heart surgery there.

On Tuesday, Pitts reached out to 8News to share an update about the two babies:

Finn has been home for a little bit now and back in September, my daughter and several of her heart friends had a welcome home party hosted by Kelly for Finn.”

Several of the babies, all who, before turning 1-year-old, had heart surgery at UVA with Dr. Gangemi, came together to celebrate Finn’s homecoming.

“They are all thriving,” Pitts said.

Each year approximately 40,000 babies are born in the United States with a congenital heart defect, according to the Congenital Heart Public Health Consortium.

You may remember Pitts, along with Blumenthal and other parents, started an online fundraiser to get things like wagons, high chairs, swings and other vital things the children at UVA’s PICU need. Babies in the pediatric cardiology unit need the swings because they can’t lay flat after surgery. Since we first told you about the GoFundMe in May, more than half of their goal has been raised — but they could still use your help to reach $5,000! Click here to donate to the online fundraiser.

Also, you can click here to like Kelly Blumenthal’s page: Prayers for Baby Finn.

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