Flu devastates family

September 27, 2017

Sarah Hawthorn remains in a coma after contracting influenza A.She has unknowingly given birth to a baby boy while in the coma.

A fit and healthy Cobram mother is in an induced coma after contracting the flu while pregnant.

And it is believed the mother does not know she has given birth to her new son.

Sarah Hawthorn, 33, is fighting for her life in Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital after her son was delivered five weeks premature during an emergency birth last month.

A spokesperson from the Alfred Hospital said she was still in a critical condition.

Rebecca Clemson, a close family friend, told the Courier Sarah’s husband Robert was maintaining a bedside vigil.

‘‘Sarah has a perfect little baby boy that she’s yet to even meet after he had to be delivered five weeks premature in order to give her a chance at fighting for her life,’’ she said.

‘‘The important thing is to raise awareness of the high risk of the flu for expecting mothers.’’

Sarah’s sister-in-law, Rachael Holt, posted on a fundraising page which has raised $27795 in just seven days.

‘‘Sarah remains in an induced coma, fighting for her life, unaware that she has given birth to the most perfect little baby boy,’’ she wrote.

‘‘At present she is fully machine-supported and literally fighting for her life.

‘‘The joy of the arrival of her precious baby is tinged with sadness as we continue to hope and pray for the best possible outcome.’’

The woman initially went to her local doctor, but her family says she was sent home several times.

On August 28, she went by ambulance to hospital, where her son was delivered in an emergency birth.

Doctors at The Alfred Hospital have confirmed that she had contracted influenza A and pneumonia, and other complications.

The fundraising page has been inundated with messages and donations.

‘‘Funds raised will be used to meet the financial needs of Sarah and her family at this time such as travel, accommodation, living and ongoing medical expenses,’’ the page reads.

‘‘We have been overwhelmed by the support and concern shown for our family and understand that you may wish to send us a message.

‘‘It is our preference that you do so privately at’’

●If you would like to help Sarah and her family, go to:

 - Vivienne Duck

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