A young mother and her employer were left traumatised when the housekeeper lost her newborn baby at the gate of Helderberg Hospital.
Speaking on behalf of the mother, Anoux Massey of Gordon’s Bay says her employee, 30, went into labour on Monday and the woman’s husband said they had been advised by their clinic doctor to go to Macassar Hospital.
“We were on the N2 travelling towards Macassar, but when we drove past Hottentots-Holland High School, her labour had advanced a lot,” Anoux explains.
“She was getting terribly sick and was vomiting and in a lot of pain.
“It became apparent quite quickly that we would not make it to Macassar and our only option was to rush to HH (Helderberg Hospital in Somerset West).”
She says on arrival about 3pm, the security guard told them to go to the maternity ward.
“To be honest, they looked bored and not interested in the least. They tell me to come into the ward, I turn around to get the lady when they shout at me to rather go to the emergency side.”
She says the woman in the car screamed and told her that the baby was coming.
“I ran into an emergency room and I say out loud that I need a wheelchair.
“Now please note, the emergency was not crowded or out of beds or staff, it was quite calm, with a lot of nurses standing around.”
She says the woman then gave birth in the car on her own.
“The legs and arms were out, but his head was stuck. I did not know what to do, but she kept pushing until the baby came out.
“The baby’s cord was wrapped around its neck twice and the baby was not responding.
“I untied the cord and started rubbing the baby not knowing what I was doing at all, but still no one had come to assist me.”
The baby unfortunately did not survive and Anoux says this left them both traumatised.
“What is the purpose of the emergency staff? No one paid me any attention.
“I stood in the ward full of blood and one nurse even shuffled past me to do something else, completely ignoring me.
“I am traumatised, the mother is traumatised, the father and his sister are traumatised. Is this OK?”
Health Department spokesperson Sithembiso Magubane says the baby was already dead in the mother’s womb when she arrived at the hospital.
“The mother stated that she last felt foetal movements early in the morning and started getting pains at 4pm,” said Magubane.
“This means that the baby may have passed on at least six hours or more prior to going into labour and prior to arriving at the hospital.
“The midwife did attend to the patient on arrival, as can be seen in some of the pictures which have been circulating.
“The clients were provided counselling at the hospital and are welcome to visit the hospital if they need more counselling.”
But Anoux says the department is lying and they are considering legal action.
“None of this (what he is saying) is true to what happened. We are in mourning now, but we are considering taking legal action.”