Mum who gave birth during Covid coma ‘pleased’ to be home with daughter for Christmas


Laura Ward has been counting down the days to her discharge date since waking from a seven-week coma to discover she’d given birth to her daughter Hope

Laura said her husband, John, has been 'amazing'
Laura Ward said her husband, John, has been ‘amazing’

A mum who woke up from a Covid coma to find she had given birth has been released from hospital in time to spend Christmas at home with her new daughter.

Laura Ward has been counting down the days to her discharge date since waking from a seven-week coma to discover she’d given birth to her daughter Hope, more than two months before her due date.

The mum had nodded to doctors to give consent to deliver Hope after medics told her they might have to deliver the baby early, although Laura said she has no recollection of this whatsoever, Manchester Evening News reports .

“I opened my eyes to see Hope on the bed with me, but I couldn’t move any part of my body,” the 33-year-old said.

“All I could do was shake and nod my head.”

Laura, a teaching assistant, arrived at hospital struggling to breathe after being diagnosed with Covid at the beginning of the school summer holidays.

Hope weighed 3lbs 7oz when she was born
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Laura Ward awoke from a Covid coma to find her baby daughter lying next to her
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Her condition deteriorated so much that she was sedated for an emergency C-section at 31 weeks and then put into a coma.

It was only when Laura finally came round at the end of September – much to the relief of family and friends – that she realised her precious girl had arrived.

Laura’s partner John Leece has been taking Hope for daily visits to see her mum in Trafford General, where she’s been undergoing intensive rehabilitation, including learning how to walk again.

But after finally being allowed to return to her home in Tyldesley, Wigan, she’s now been reunited with her family, including three-year-old son William and step-children Josh and Lexi.

Family and friends, including her parents Lynn and Bill, were there to greet her as she arrived on Monday morning to a house decorated with balloons and ‘welcome home’ posters.

Laura has been having intense physiotherapy to assist in her recovery
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“I’m so pleased to be home,” said Laura, who had gestational diabetes throughout her pregnancy. “The physiotherapist brought me home and John was there waiting for me with the kids. William was so excited he was shouting ‘mummy, mummy’ and trying to get in the car.”

It’s been nearly five months since Laura was last at home, before she was initially treated at the Royal Bolton and later transferred to Wythenshawe Hospital, where she spent 35 days of her coma on an ECMO machine – the highest level of life support.

John, 37, said he had ‘every faith’ that she’d have the strength to pull through.

Laura said she is “so pleased” to be home
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Laura only started walking again at the start of December
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“I’m ecstatic to have her back after all this time,” he said. “It’s been tough but we’ve had people helping us out and they’re all good kids so that’s made it easier.

“The worst day was when they rang and said they needed to do an emergency C-section and then after that they said they needed to get her on one of the ECMO machines or else she could die.

“She met all the criteria, it was just a case of waiting to see if they had a bed. Once she was there we knew she was in the best place and I had every faith she’d pull through because she’d been fit and well before it.”

He added: “I always had an inkling she would be coming home, just because of the person she is. She had her kids to come home for and a lot to fight for.”

After coming round from her coma, having had tracheostomy and feeding tubes fitted, it was two weeks before Laura was even able to speak and she’s since had to learn how to do the most basic things all over again.

The muscles in her legs had deteriorated over the weeks and it was only at the beginning of December when she managed to walk again – firstly making her way down the hospital corridor with a frame and then holding the hand of her three-year-old son William.

Laura’s physiotherapy will now continue at home and she’s been given various support aids to help her around the house.

For now she’ll have a bed downstairs, but she’s already been tackling the stairs herself.

“I said to John when I got home that I just wanted to try them,” she said. “I did manage to get to the top but when I got there I needed to sit down and I needed help getting back up. It’ll take some time but I’ll get there.”

After a takeaway pizza night to celebrate her homecoming, the family are now looking forward to having a happy settled Christmas at home.

Laura hopes to return to her job at Tyldesley Primary School in September, when son William will also be starting there. And she’s been inundated with messages of support from parents and staff who can’t wait to have her back.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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