Tiny premature baby survives COVID-19 thanks to spectacular NHS staff

A premature baby girl thought to be Scotland’s youngest coronavirus patient has now recovered from the virus, to the delight of her parents and the healthcare team who cared for her.

Peyton Maguire was born and delivered eight weeks early via C-section on March 26 at Wishaw General Hospital, after her mother Tracy was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia.

Following her birth, Peyton was given steroids to help strengthen her lungs, receiving amazing care from neonatal nurses in the days that followed her diagnosis.

The little fighter, who weighed just 3lbs 5oz (1.5kg) at birth, was progressing well but after three weeks Peyton began to show the slightest of symptoms of coronavirus – a sniffle and a few coughs, almost undetectable.

Sharing her story on BBC Radio Scotland’s Mornings with Kaye Adams programme, and with the Scotsman, Tracy said the news that her baby had become one of the country’s youngest virus patients was traumatic.

“They said ‘she’s fine, don’t panic – but she has tested positive for coronavirus’,” said Tracy.

“I think the doctor was trying to keep me calm but I was sobbing.

“As much as she was fine I thought at what point was she with the virus? How is she fighting against it when she’s so wee? It was just the unknown.”

Initially, both Tracy and father AJ were told they would have to go home and isolate for 14 days away from their baby.

However, after pleading with staff, the hospital kindly agreed to allow the mother to isolate with her daughter.  

Tracy said that watching the staff work while she was in hospital was “incredible”.

“They put their lives at risk to make sure my baby was getting fed and cuddled. Even wearing their PPE, they were determined to hold her,” she said.

On Monday, after two negative tests, mother and baby were both allowed to go home. Reunited with the father, AJ, at the family home in North Lanarkshire.

Now home and settling into a routine, Peyton is flourishing.

Tracy and her family have praised the NHS doctors and nurses at Wishaw General who guided them through a remarkable and daunting birth.

She said: “They are doing a job that is unreal – they put their life at risk to make sure my baby was getting fed and cuddled in their full PPE.

“It’s spectacular, you’ll never understand how grateful you can be to people. Peyton is my most precious thing in the whole world and I trusted them to look after her.

“To any mums that are worried, put your trust in these nurses.”

Tracy hopes their story can reassure other prospective parents who may need to visit hospitals in the near future.

NHS Lanarkshire chief midwife Cheryl Clark said: “We’re delighted that the fantastic care Peyton has received from our staff has meant she is well enough to go home, allowing AJ to be reunited with his wife and daughter.”

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