When you give birth in a hospital, whether you're ultimately surrounded by doulas or surgical masks, you probably have one basic expectation about your experience: that you and your baby are going to be cared for and treated with respect. At the very least, it's nearly unthinkable to contemplate a medical professional deliberately putting your baby in danger, right?
Imagine, then, how parents in China felt recently when they learned that a practicing intern nurse had been mistreating newborns—in order to take a bunch of obnoxious photos that she subsequently posted to her blog.
Xiao Shiyu, a senior student at the Zhejiang Chinese Medical University, was working as a nurse in a hospital in Hangzhou when for some reason she decided it would be a swell idea to start posing newborns for some less-than-flattering photos. Not only did she decorate one baby's face with paper cutouts to make him look like a pig, she held some of them upright so that their unsupported necks twisted to one side.
It's hard for me to even look at these two images, because I remember how protective I felt about my own babies' weak necks and how carefully I would hold them so they didn't flop around. I can't imagine what this girl was thinking, not just with her actions of taking the photos, but then to upload them to a BLOG—along with zany commentary like, "I almost died laughing!" and "the babies are too small to resist my mischief."
Thankfully, Xiao's internship has since been recalled. Her university has issued a stern statement about the incident, saying she'd violated medical ethics and hospital rules, and that they're now investigating the case and will "punish her accordingly."
As for Xiao, she deleted all the photos and commentary from her online account and has publicly apologized:
I took those pictures because the babies were so adorable. I feel so sorry for damaging the reputation of the hospital and nurses. Please forgive my stupidity. I'll improve myself and offer better service.
She let those babies' heads twist around like that because they were so CUTE? Come on. If I were the parent of one of those newborns, I'd be beyond livid that my child's life had been in the hands of someone so careless and immature. It's hard to say what will happen to Xiao, but it sounds like she's got a LOT of growing up to do before she's trusted again with the responsibility of caring for helpless infants.
What would you have done if a nurse had taken these kinds of photos of your newborn?
Image via Flickr/Herkie