A Bundeena family is rallying around its newest arrival - baby Andy, who is being treated in the special care unit at the Royal Hospital for Women, Randwick.
Laura Macintyre gave birth to the little boy at Kareena Hospital on December 5. Andy was born via IVF and caesarean, two days short of 37 weeks, weighing in at a healthy 4.055 kilograms.
Shortly after, he required urgent care and was transferred to the Royal's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), which looks after critically ill babies.
"At first everything was perfect," Mrs Macintyre said. "Until it wasn't. Andy stopped breathing less than one minute after he was born, and required immediate CPR."
Doctors worked on Andy for 10 minutes. "My husband Lee and I were still in the room and we had gone into shock," the new mum said.
"Neonatal Emergency Transport Service (NETS) arrived and started cooling Andy to help reduce the risks of brain damage. He was transferred to the Royal and was placed on a cooling mat for 72 hours when he was five hours old. The cooling mat is the only proven way to reduce the risk of brain damage if used within the first six hours of life."
The family is being supported by the hospital's foundation, which assists couples to stay close to their baby. "They have paid for us to have accommodation by the hospital so we are just a five minute walk to the hospital," Mrs Macintyre said. "We are classified as regional because we have to travel so far. You can't just come once and stay all day, you come and go."
The Macintyres have also launched a fundraiser to give back to the NICU. They have raised more than $5500 so far.
"That's just been thanks to our circle of friends," Mrs Macintyre said. "It's hard to share this with everyone but we feel it's the only way to get people to understand how much the hospital needs funds.
"More than 70 per cent of the life-saving equipment in the NICU has been funded through donations, so this fundraiser is important to us."
This is the couple's second time in a special care unit for newborns. Their older child, Joey, was born premature and spent four weeks in the neonatal unit at Kareena. "This is our second stint but this time it's a lot worse because Joey wasn't sick, he was just early," Mrs Macintyre said.
"Andy is our miracle baby. He has been receiving the most outstanding care. He is sedated with morphine, has a one-on-one nurse, and is connected to multiple life-saving machines, but he is in the best place."
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