On April 2, no one dared dream the scene that unfolded Wednesday afternoon at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, Long Island.
That’s when Yanira Soriano, 36, arrived. She was critically ill with COVID-19 and pneumonia.
And she was 34 weeks pregnant.
The medical team put her on a ventilator and scheduled an emergency C-section.
A woman is usually conscious during a C-section. But not this time. The staff felt the fear.
“The fear that this mother would die, and this baby would live its life without knowing its mother.” Dr. Benjamin Schwartz the head OBGYN told us.
But Yanira Soriano lingered near death. Isolated. Eleven days on a respirator in a medically induced coma. Nurse Denise Scheidel, who was there when Soriano went into the operating room, just happened to be in the ICU when Soriano regained consciousness.
“I was helping someone with a problem and I just noticed those big brown eyes looking back at me. I was like, ‘I know you!’”
The respirator came out Monday. On Wednesday, Soriano went home.
She rolled out of the hospital in a wheelchair as dozens looked on. Her husband was there, holding their 12-day-old baby boy Walter. As she took him in her arms, mother and son met for the first time to the raucous applause.
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