After a premature birth on April 3, Luz Milagros Verón was pronounced dead, sent to a morgue and spent 12 hours in a refrigerated drawer. Today, she is in the intensive care ward of the Chaco hospital, breathing, and “progressing well”.
Analía Bouguet gave birth to her baby girl after just six months of pregnancy. She and husband Fabián Verón told reporters they were prepared for bad news after a difficult pregnancy and previous cesarean section. Just minutes after delivery, the little girl was issued a death certificate, attributed to “unknown causes”.
After coming out of her sedation, Bouguet insisted to see the body of her daughter. According to Clarín, she stroked her daughter’s tiny hands with her fingers, heard a sigh and noticed movement. The parents then collapsed together in tears of joy and laughter.
Bouguet told Todo Noticias that she thought she was “hallucinating” when she saw signs of life.
“This is more than a miracle,” Verón told Clarín. “In my family we are believers, and now our faith in God is much bigger.”
Five doctors have since been suspended for the alleged medical negligence. According to Verón, the professionals did not follow a health protocol that requires bodies be held for two hours in a “warm environment”.
Doctors say they don’t know how the little girl could have survived 12 hours in the 0-degree cell. The baby now suffers from hypothermia, and may subsequently have a weakened heartbeat.
Chaco deputy health secretary Rafael Sabatinelli said authorities will continue to investigate those involved in the incident.
The parents are now keeping vigil on their daughter, and fielding the torrent of requests for interviews that have sprung from the widespread interest in the case. Bouguet says her child still has a long way to go, but has faith that she will pull through.
“I always knew she was alive,” she said.