Parents Claim Hospital Demanded $177K 'Ransom' to Release Their Premature Baby

Newborn baby
Adele Blake/Facebook

Before the arrival of a new baby, it's becoming increasingly popular for couples to take a "babymoon" and enjoy a last trip alone together before their family expands. If this getaway is later in the pregnancy, it’s typically within driving distance, but others may plan more exotic destinations while they can still fly. With this earlier timeframe in mind, a British couple decided to travel overseas during a mom-to-be's second trimester, but their trip quickly turned into a nightmare -- and not just because the baby came prematurely.

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When Adele Blake was six months pregnant, she and her partner Brandon Ward planned to leave England for a trip to the Mediterranean before their first baby girl's arrival. They picked a resort in Turkey, and before leaving, they had doctors check to assure that she was "fit to fly." However, just three days after arriving,  Adele went into labor while sitting by the pool. "I was just eating some [french fries] when my waters broke. It was a complete shock and I panicked," she told the Sun. "I knew it shouldn’t be happening. I was sobbing in the back of the ambulance."

Newborn baby
Brandon Ward/Facebook

Adele gave birth to baby Ayda at a hospital in Marmaris and claims that her premature newborn was "held hostage" for money while her insurance company was having problems with the paperwork. The new mom explained that when she arrived at the hospital, Blake wasn’t allowed to be with her, and things only got worse after her emergency C-section. "Almost as soon as I came round from the anesthetic, a receptionist arrived in my room and started demanding money," she said. "I was groggy and confused and really only wanted to see my baby, but they wheeled me down to the office, insisting I make a down payment."

More from CafeMom: This Mom Went Through 100 Hours of Labor & Then Her 'Worst Fears' Came True

Newborn and mom
Brandon Ward/Facebook

According to the furious couple, they made Adele wait 10 hours before they let her meet her baby for the first time. "I was only allowed to see her for 10 minutes a day and they wouldn't let me feed her. I only got to hold her twice in the whole time she was in the hospital," she said. "And on those two occasions, they wouldn’t allow Ward into the room at all. It was just heartbreaking."

Although the family had insurance, they fought with both their provider and the hospital for 77 days over the bill -- all while the hospital refused to discharge Ayda until they received their payment. "After a few weeks, she was clearly well enough to come home and take a bottle, but they kept feeding her on a tube because they wanted to keep her there -- they were literally holding her hostage," she said. "They said I had to settle the bill, to pay the money or they would keep the baby and we wouldn’t be allowed to return to the UK. They ignored all our pleas to be allowed to bond with her. They just didn’t seem to care about the damage they were inflicting on our family. They only seemed to care about their bill."

More from CafeMom: This Is the Most Incredible Birth Photo & Social Media Doesn't Want You to See It

Newborn girl
Brandon Ward/Facebook

The couple set up a GoFundMe account and rented an apartment in Turkey to be near their baby. Nearly three months after they originally left for their vacation, the new family of three was finally allowed to return home together. "We're treasuring every moment with Ayda," Adele said. "We missed out on the first three months of her life and we’re making up for it now. I just hope that by speaking out, no one else will ever have to suffer the way we did."

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