Heart transplant Tia is games golden girlBy Karen Jordan
September 11, 2012
A six-year-old Woodley girl who had a heart transplant two years ago got a taste of Olympic success.
Tia Price represented Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) in the 2012 British Transplant Games in Medway from Thursday, August 23, to Sunday, August 26, winning a medal.
Tia has been a patient at GOSH since she was three, suffering from dilated cardiomyopathy – a condition that weakens and enlarges the heart so it cannot pump blood efficiently.
A heart machine kept her alive until her successful transplant in 2010.
Tia, of Rivermead Road, excelled at last week’s Transplant Games, competing in the 50m sprint, the obstacle course, track and field, ball throw and hall sports.
She fought off competition from children representing hospitals across the UK, scooping a bronze medal in the tug of war and also a medal for the best effort in the hall sports.
Aiming to encourage transplant patients to regain fitness and confidence by celebrating life, the Games increase awareness of the value of organ donation.
Tia said: “I ran really fast in my race. Before my transplant I couldn’t run at all. The best bit of the Transplant Games was getting a medal. It was so exciting.”
Tia’s mum Stacy said: “When Tia was ill she couldn’t run or even walk up a flight of stairs.
“Her transplant has given her a new lease of life and it’s fantastic to see her with the energy to do things like throwing a javelin. And for her to win a medal is brilliant.
“If she hadn’t received her organ, none of this would have been possible.
“It’s worrying to think that 96 per cent of people will take an organ will but only 23 per cent are prepared to give one.”
Janet Holmes from GOSH, said: “Each and every one of our GOSH heart and lung competitors in The British Transplant Games is a champion by virtue of standing at the starting line.
“Tia’s participation in the Transplant Games and her drive to do her best is a symbol of her own unique and personal achievements in life.”
To make a donation to the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity visit www.gosh.org.