Baby Zahra: Hope

June 7, 2016

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Baby Zahra was born just a few days before the New Year on December 29th. The smiles and happiness a newborn brings soon faded away for Fatima and Mohammad, Zahra’s parents. Zahra was born at home without the assistance of a skilled midwife or doctor. Upon birth, Zahra’s face was flushed blue and was not crying, an indication that she had birth asphyxia. This condition is defined as the failure to establish breathing at birth and is one of the primary causes of early newborn deaths or stillbirths according to the World Health Organization.  While Baby Zahra’s parents were able to get her to establish her breathing, she was not doing well.

Hope

Two days later, Baby Zahra was brought to Afshar Hospital with recurrent seizures and fevers. A neighbor recommended Afshar Hospital to Zahra’s parents. Fatima and Mohammad entered the hospital with hope, with the expectation that Afshar Hospital will be the place for baby Zahra to receive the care she needed to get well.

Facing the Unknown

Zahra was immediately placed in an incubator, as doctors swiftly assessed Zahra’s health and tried to find the best way to help Zahra. Using oxygen therapy, phototherapy, antibiotics and IV fluids, doctors treated Zahra hoping she would recover soon. Meanwhile, Fatima and Mohammad were receiving a health education course on strict infection prevention measures.

Despite adequate care and multiple changes of antibiotics Zahra was not recovering as quickly as expected and was in critical condition. After three days, Fatima and Mohammad started to lose hope and wanted to carry baby Zahra home and quit the treatment. However our neonatal team at Afshar Hospital convinced them to stay and carry on the treatment.

14 Days had passed and baby Zahra had not recovered from her fevers. Fatima and Mohammad once again began to lose hope because they couldn’t afford to stay longer. One of AMOR’s principle practices is to care for all patients, regardless of their ability to pay. After a conversation with our doctors, Fatima and Mohammad were able to be at ease, and know that all expenses would be covered, through AMOR. AMOR’s generous donors make it possible for patients who are struggling to break free from the cycle of poverty to receive free medical care when they cannot pay. These services truly impact and save the lives of those who would otherwise not be able to seek quality medical care.

New Beginnings

Slowly, Baby Zahra recovered and after 28 days she was able to go home with her parents, which brought new hope and a smile to Fatima and Mohammad. They are happy and thankful for the neonatal team at Afshar Hospital, their services and those who made it possible for Baby Zahra to get the lifesaving care she needed. Doctors will watch Zahra closely in the next few visits to ensure she lives a healthy life.

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