Baby Care

East Bay mom warns dangers of COVID after baby’s battle in ICU

East Bay mom warns dangers of COVID after baby's battle in ICU
Written by Publishing Team

The spreading variant of the omicron is wreaking havoc among the youngest people in the country. Doctors at the American Academy of Pediatrics report that 325,000 children tested positive for COVID last week.

One of those who tested positive is little Doni Rivera from East Bay. Although he is home safe and ready to engage in the world now, his mother said that this is in stark contrast to his condition just a few days ago.

“I really think that without (nurse) Trisha from John Muir Medical Center my baby wouldn’t be here,” said Natasha Johnson.

She brought her 3-month-old son home on Tuesday after a five-day stay in a pediatric intensive care unit.

She said the problems started with a family reunion on Christmas Day. Although everyone took a COVID test, some participants were not vaccinated.

“I thought everyone was okay. And I started noticing after Christmas, around Monday, that my son wasn’t feeling very well,” Johnson said.

Johnson eventually took her baby to John Muir Medical Center where he tested positive for respiratory syncytial virus and COVID.

The American Academy of Pediatrics said the number of children catching the virus increased by 64% between the week before Christmas and the week after Christmas.

“The new variant spreads extremely, very easily. It is very virulent in that regard. So even a modest exposure can lead to infection. So, considering what is happening with the holidays, it is not surprising to see cases skyrocket, ”said Dr. Mark Schwartz, a biotechnologist at San Jose State University.

Doni quickly deteriorated, eventually needing forced oxygen to breathe. Johnson feared the worst as his son hovered near Death Gate.

“And I asked her (the nurse), is my baby going to die? And she said I promise you that I won’t let your baby die. Do to save my baby,” Johnson recalls.

The nurse’s promise was kept. Doni has recovered and is now at home.

For Johnson, the tumultuous five days are also a warning to others about the dangers of COVID, even from family and especially unvaccinated young children.

“I don’t think people take it very seriously at all,” she said.


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