BABY Britney Marcus and mom Portia Marcus. | Supplied
BABY Britney Marcus and mom Portia Marcus. | Supplied

Quick-thinking mom saves her baby with CPR skills she learnt while in hospital

By Nomalanga Tshuma Time of article published Jul 30, 2021

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Cape Town - A former Tygerberg Hospital patient and mother to a newborn baby has been commended for her quick thinking and use of emergency life-saving skills she learnt while in hospital to save her daughter’s life.

Just a month after her early birth and discharge from the hospital, Portia Marcus’ baby Britney became very ill and stopped breathing, prompting her mother into action.

Marcus said to save her daughter’s life she immediately began to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) as advised by the nursing staff during her times in hospital.

“Britney was born at 26 weeks and 3 days and weighing only 700g at birth. Although my daughter overcame many of the complications of prematurity and made it home, less than a month after her discharge, she became very ill and stopped breathing.

“I can’t thank the KMC Team of Tygerberg Hospital enough, especially Enrolled Nursing Assistant (ENA) Heather Saizs, because if it was not for her teaching me those CPR techniques my baby wouldn’t be alive today.”

After her mother performed CPR on her, baby Britney was rushed to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Tygerberg Hospital, where she was put on a ventilator (breathing machine) for about a week before she slowly began recovering.

Tygerberg Hospital paediatric registrar Dr Suzanne Kerswil said: “We are grateful to the fantastic KMC nurses for their dedicated care of premature babies like Britney during the long and often difficult time spent in hospital, and for teaching life-saving interventions like infant CPR.

“Premature babies remain at risk for infection and ”sudden infant death syndrome“ (SIDS) for many months after they are discharged home. SIDS is when a baby who is younger than a year old dies suddenly (usually during sleep) and after an investigation, no cause can be found. SIDS can happen suddenly to a healthy baby. So every bit of after-care teaching and advice shared with our patients is important.”

ENA Heather Saizs said: “It makes me feel good knowing that my hard work leads to positive outcomes, such as this.”

Cape Argus

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