Mackay baby stopped breathing in her mother’s arms
AT JUST four-weeks old, newborn Emmie stopped breathing and turned blue while being cradled in her mothers' arms.
At five weeks, her lungs had collapsed three times, four viruses had hold of her tiny body and she was in Townsville University Hospital's Paediatric Intensive Care Unit with breathing tubes in.
It's every family's worst nightmare, but eight months on mum Michaellie Tate credits her daughter's extraordinary return to health to the Mackay and Townsville University Hospital teams.
"Emmie had experienced cold-like symptoms leading up to it, but it all changed when I was at my mother's house and she coughed, stopped breathing and turned blue," Michaellie said.
"Mum took her in her arms, looked at me and said 'call an ambulance right now'."
Michaellie said waiting for the ambulance was the longest moment of her life.
"We were taken to Mackay Hospital where about 20 doctors and nurses flocked to her side as she fell into apnoea states and stopped breathing," Michaellie said.
"One doctor cradled her head for three hours until they stabilised her."
Within hours, Emmie and Michaellie were bundled into a rescue chopper and sent to Townsville University Hospital's Paediatric Intensive Care Unit.
"Emmie was the smallest one in PICU, which was extremely scary for her dad Elliot and I as we thought we were going to lose our baby girl," Michaellie said.
"She was induced, and results said she had three viruses affecting her lungs; rhinovirus, bronchiolitis and entero virus.
"She was in a critical state for three days and during that time her lungs collapsed three times."
With each new day in the unit, Michaellie said she found comfort in the staff who became like family.
"We can't thank the doctors and nurses enough for their dedication and expertise," Michaellie said.
"If it wasn't for them, Emmie wouldn't be here today and your faces will always have a special place in our hearts."
Nine months on, Emmie has completely recovered and is looking forward to spending Christmas in Bowen.
"We're spending Christmas by the sea this year," Michaellie said.
"All I can say to parents is, yes, you are in a horrible situation, but you have to tell yourself that everything is going to be OK and stay positive," she said.
"Your child is in the best facility possible."