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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A Miraculous Bundle of Joy

The Baby Unit has been through a tough period recently, with a higher number of babies than normal not surviving. So when another mum wanted to be discharged early (which we have to allow here) with a very sick baby, the Baby Unit team very reluctantly agreed. The mother signed a "against medical advice" form and promise to come back in a couple of days...

Dr Sarah takes up the story:
When she returned, we were all alarmed to see that the baby looked really quite ill.

Over the next day, the baby continued to deteriorate. She needed to be assisted to breathe for up to 10 minutes at a time, had jaundice, extremely high blood sugars, and profuse diarrhoea. Now that we’ve been in Uganda a while, I know what that usually means. The game is up.

But there were people already praying for this little one, and Sarah also prayed that God would do something, because she was certain that the baby wouldn’t survive without a miracle. We all know that God doesn’t heal every time, and sometimes it’s mystifying why one person is healed, and another is not. But this little baby did indeed survive and is continuing to heal – she’s even breastfeeding well these days. Woo hoooo!
It's an awesome story of the impact the Baby Unit is having here. But it also poses a tough question. What about the next time a mother wants to take her baby home too early? It’s nearly always about lacking money, or lacking someone to look after your other kids at home. Whatever the reason, it’s rarely that the mother simply doesn’t care.

Dr Sarah has an answer for the problem:
From now, we’re planning to be stubborn when mothers try to take babies home who are likely to do badly. No, we’ll not handcuff them to the Unit... although, actually, that’s not a terrible idea! But we’ll insist that they stay, and offer to talk to the social worker of the hospital to see if any assistance can be arranged. Not always an easy task when the hospital is really strapped for cash, but we have to try.

Please pray for the Baby Unit team, doing a tough job in difficult circumstances, and thank God for this latest, miraculous little bundle of joy.