Mom Delivers Stillborn Baby & Hospital Admits to 'Shortcomings' During Delivery

Stillborn baby
Maricel Prado/YouTube

TRIGGER WARNING: This post contains images and information about stillbirth and infant loss, which may be triggering to some.

Despite having a perfect pink nursery set up and a closet filled with tiny clothes, Maricel Prado and her husband, Dennis, no longer have a need for them. That's because the 30-year-old's beloved daughter, Ysabella, was delivered stillborn right after her local hospital allegedly dismissed her pain and tried sending her home. Now, this mom from Perth, Australia, is sharing her intimate photos from the tragic day -- at the same time Fiona Stanley Hospital is acknowledging its mistakes. Despite the images being heartbreaking, she hopes raising awareness will help to ensure that no other parents have to wonder if their newborn would still be alive, had the hospital they trusted done things differently. 

  • When Prado was 38 weeks pregnant, she went to the hospital complaining of pain. 

    After one failed round of IVF, Prado and her husband were more than ready to meet their baby girl, whom they'd already named Ysabella. When the pain she was feeling intensified after she got to the hospital, the excited parents thought that the next time they left, they'd be headed home with their newborn in tow. 

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  • But the hospital tried to send her home -- just two hours before her baby was stillborn. 

    According to Prado, she arrived at the hospital with painful contractions at 1:00 a.m. and her baby was checked through an ultrasound scan. A monitor determined that her little one's heartbeat was strong at 153 beats per minute and midwives announced that she was in early labor at two centimeters dilated.

    However because the hospital was "busy," staff wanted to send her home to wait for things to progress. But Prado told the staff that she was in intense pain and didn't want to leave.

    "She asked me if I wanted morphine and then I said yes, I didn't ask anything at all after that because I trusted her," Prado told 7 News.

    However, there was allegedly no follow-up monitoring until 5:00 a.m., and by the time a staff member finally did check on Ysabella, she found out that the baby no longer had a heartbeat. "My concern is if they monitored me well and I had a CTG [cardiotocography] attached to me they could have saved our baby, because this would have alerted them if our baby is in distress," she wrote on Facebook

  • According to Prado, staff gave her a spare bed and just left without checking on things after giving her the pain medicine. 

    Baby Ysabella came within two hours, but she wasn't the healthy newborn her parents were expecting and was instead delivered stillborn. Although it's incredibly painful, her heartbroken parents want others to see what that moment was like in hopes of finding answers as to what went wrong.

    "Whilst I was at the hospital during labor, I felt that the midwives were not monitoring me and our baby, as they should have been doing especially after I was administered morphine," Prado wrote. "But I thought I have to put my trust in the hospital staff to take care of me and our baby. It is difficult for us to come to terms with the fact that we believe our baby's death could have been avoided."

  • After an internal investigation, the hospital is now admitting that it could have done better.

    Since Ysabella's birth, Fiona Stanley Hospital has identified several "factors" that could have contributed to Ysabella's death. These include communication between staff, how busy the unit was during their time there, and an incomplete medical assessment when Prado first arrived. 

  • "This may have led to a missed opportunity for closer monitoring, of Mrs. Prado and her baby," clinical services director Dr. Paul Mark said.

    Despite identifying these factors, Mark told News 7 that "it could not be determined if this would have changed the very sad outcome."

    Since the investigations findings, the hospital has reportedly recommended emailing staff about what went wrong as well as creating a "lessons learned" poster. "On behalf of Fiona Stanley Hospital, I would like to express my sincerest condolences to Mr. and Mrs. Prado at this extremely difficult time," Mark told Daily Mail. "An investigation into the circumstances surrounding Mrs. Prado's time in the maternity unit has been completed ... This found there were shortcomings in the risk assessment of Mrs. Prado."

  • Prado just hopes that the hospital sees her pain -- and not just a poster -- so this never happens again.

    "An apology won't make things right. It won't bring our baby back," she wrote. "But by identifying what we believe are failings and lessons from our baby's death, I hope steps will be taken to improve maternity care and ensure no other parent loses a baby the same way to us."

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