October 25, 2016
Written by Justin Bergman
This article originally appeared on Johnson & Johnson.
It was an historic initiative: train healthcare workers across China in neonatal resuscitation—from big cities to remote villages. Ten years later, over 150,000 newborns are alive because of it. We go behind the scenes to explore the secrets of the program’s success.
For an expectant mother, one of the most frightening things that can happen during labor is to give birth—and then hear nothing. No tiny being whimper, no I’ve-entered-the-world wail.
For Jia Qiuwan, it happened not once, but twice.
When Jia gave birth to her first son, Binyang, nearly 10 years ago, he wasn’t able to breathe on his own. There was no cry. But even if there were, she wouldn’t have been able to hear it. As doctors rushed to successfully resuscitate her baby, the new mom slipped into a coma and didn’t come to for a half hour.
When Jia was admitted to the same hospital—the Hongsibao Maternity & Child Health Hospital, in the Ningxia region of western China—to give birth to her second son in late 2014, she was hoping for a much easier delivery.