Corona Catastrophe is Pregnant with Hope

Healthy baby born to a COVID-19 positive woman at Nanavati Hospital

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Mumbai: As pall of COVID gloom thickens, a positive report firmly negating the clout of ravaging virus flashes. The catastrophe has been found pregnant with hope as a woman infected by corona virus gives birth to a healthy baby girl in Nanavati super speciality hospital on Sunday. Though womb proved perfect shield for the baby, she was socially distanced from mother just as she saw the light of the day.

35-year-old COVID-19 positive pregnant woman is from South Mumbai. The successful childbirth has become a cause of jubilance not only for the family but for doctors and healthcare workers who are striving to save lives in the face of a worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.

The woman, being in 38th week of gestation, was admitted in a South Mumbai based private hospital for antenatal care. Though she had no symptoms, as per the protocol, she was tested before her delivery to confirm her COVID-19 status. Unfortunately, the woman tested positive on April 18. Since the hospital didn’t have an obstetrics unit for COVID-19 positive patients, the woman was shifted to Nanavati Hospital.

“The family was extremely stressed after she tested positive for COVID-19 and we were informed that she needs to be shifted to some other hospital. Our treating doctors referred us to Nanavati Hospital. We were relieved only after we were counselled by doctors and coordinators at Nanavati Hospital on the whole procedure,” said the patient’s husband.

A detailed Standard Operating Procedure created by the hospital after examining international case studies, guidelines by obstetrics and gynaecology department, infectious disease experts and paediatric department was put in action well before the patient was admitted.

“Only a handful of such surgeries are performed in India so far, thus a special obstetrics unit, suitable to the infection control protocols was created. We kept the surgical staff number to minimum and trained them for use of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). Special COVID Corridors were created for safe transportation of the mother and baby,” said Dr Suruchi Desai, Senior Consultant, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Nanavati Hospital.

The surgical unit took additional care to ensure there was no contact between the mother and the child. Immediately post the successful delivery of the baby girl, a team of neonatologists headed by Dr. Tushar Maniar, Head of Paediatrics Unit, shifted the baby girl to a special isolation Intensive Care Unit. The COVID 19 status of the baby will be checked on third and eighth day. Doctors said the baby is stable and completely healthy.

According to WHO, women with COVID-19 can breastfeed if they wish to but should practice hygiene during the feeding, where a mask where available, wash hands before and after touching the baby and routinely clean and disinfect surfaces they have touched.

Mr. Manpreet Sohal, Director and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Nanavati Hospital congratulated the surgical unit for a successful surgery and wished the baby girl a healthy life ahead. “This successful childbirth, amidst such adverse period, has infused new energy in our hospital’s frontline COVID warriors. We are successfully performing various procedures in-spite of complication added by COVID 19 infection. We will stay committed to our fight against this pandemic,” said Mr. Sohal.

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