When pains woke pregnant Amy O’Riordan during the night she had no idea about the drama that was about to unfold.
Amy, from Middlesbrough, hadn’t been feeling well when she suddenly woke in the middle of the night feeling a need to push just 27-weeks into her pregnancy.
Amy said: “I couldn’t believe that I felt the need to push and ended up delivering Jessie so fast. Me and my partner Mark were in shock but he called 999 for help.
“The call handler was amazing and advised Mark what to do. They advised him to open the sack but he was in such shock that I did this, then got Jess and started giving her mouth to mouth. I don’t know how I knew what to do.”
The rapid response paramedic team leader Colin Gibson from Redcar Station arrived at the house very quickly and was surprised at what he saw. “I saw a young girl with this tiny baby in her hands, she handed me the baby and said ‘please save her’, and my heart sank.”
Colin began chest compressions and gave tiny Jessie some oxygen. Then the ambulance crew arrived with paramedics Michelle Trafford and Alan Barnby also from Redcar Station. Colin had brought in his maternity kit and immediately asked Michelle to cut Jess’s cord.
Michelle and Colin looked after Jess and Alan saw to Amy making sure she was fit enough to go in the ambulance and pre-alerted the A&E department at The James Cook University Hospital.
The entire time baby Jess was making more tiny breaths. Colin said: “We got Amy on the stretcher and placed Jess on her tummy for warmth and so Michelle and I could keep giving compressions and assist respirations.”
They got Jess into A&E where a team were waiting for their arrival. Amy said: “Just as we arrived at the hospital Jess gave out a tiny whimper, it was looking more positive. I was just so grateful to the amazing paramedics; they saved my baby daughter’s life.” Jess was moved to the neonatal unit where she continues to go from strength to strength.
Michelle said: “It was so emotional as we didn’t know whether Jess would survive after all our efforts to save her but we were so pleased when we handed her over to the staff on A&E and she was improving all the time. We were so concerned and desperate to know how Jess was.
“We have met Jess and Amy again four weeks on and I am astounded, they both look so well. Amy was so calm when we got to her house that cold winter morning, she was brilliant.”
Jess was moved to the neonatal unit at James Cook where she continues to go from strength to strength and Amy hopes it won’t be long before she can start thinking about taking her baby home.
Neonatal consultant Professor Sunil Sinha described Jess as a “miracle”.