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Twins – first born for New Year

By Richardson Dhalai and Sasha Harrinanan Thursday, January 2 2014

click on pic to zoom in
New Year twins: Aarti Nagessar happily poses with her son, Ishmael, left, and daughter, Ashley, fraternal  twins born early yesterday morning at San F...
New Year twins: Aarti Nagessar happily poses with her son, Ishmael, left, and daughter, Ashley, fraternal twins born early yesterday morning at San F...

A boy and girl, fraternal twins, were the first babies born on New Year’s Day.

As of midday yesterday, a total of eight babies were delivered at the Port-of-Spain and San Fernando General Hospitals and Mt Hope Women’s Hospital.

San Fernando recorded four births with doctors prepped to deliver three more babies by Caesarean Section later in the afternoon.

The first four were all natural births, including the twin boy and girl born 29 minutes apart to 27- year-old Aarti Nagessar of Dow Village, California.

The boy came first at about 12.06 am, weighing 3.06 kilogrammes, followed by his sister at 12.35 am. She was smaller weighing 2.5 kilogrammes.

Nagessar, who has three older children, two boys and a girl, described the birth of her twins as “very good” and thanked the medical staff of the San Fernando hospital’s maternity ward for their assistance in the deliveries.

“I feel very good and I want to thank the doctors and nurses because late (Tuesday) night I started to feel a little bit of pain and then my son was born, but it was a little difficult when my daughter was coming and they see about me real quick and then she was born,” Nagessar said shyly. She named the twins Ishmael and Ashley.

Nagessar, a housewife, was due to be discharged later yesterday and she said her older children were anxious to welcome their new brother and sister.

The hospital’s third baby, another boy weighing 3.7 kilogrammes, was born to Melissa Charles of St Mary’s Village, Moruga at 4.13 am.

Charles, 34, said she felt “happy, tired and honoured” as her son, who would be named Omari Johnson, was due during the Christmas holidays.

“I was expecting him during Christmas so I am a bit tired and sleepy right now, but I am glad he is here now,” said Charles, who has four older children, three girls and a boy.

Meanwhile, at 5.53 am the fourth baby, another boy weighing 3.38 kilogrammes, was born to Drupattie Narine, 24, of Penal.

Narine, who spoke shyly to reporters as she cradled her son, said she did not expect to deliver him on New Year’s Day as she had been told by doctors she “still had a good way to go”. However her son, named Videsh, arrived earlier than planned.

“I feel good, real good,” said Narine, who also has a three-year-old daughter.

Amari Grenado, weighing in at 3.71 kilogrammes), was the first baby born in 2014 at the Port-of- Spain hospital.

When Newsday visited Port-of-Spain’s maternity department yesterday morning, baby Amari was wrapped in a blanket, taking a nap while held securely in his mother’s arms.

“I’m thankful to the Lord for this New Year’s gift,” Kathy-Ann Nimblett said with a smile. “I was due on December 29 so I never expected to give birth today. I feel good in my heart. Amari was born at 1.07 am by C-section (Cesarean section). He’s my fourth child and second son, but the first child for his father, who is very excited.”

Telleca Black and then Janelle McLatchie were the other two women to give birth at the Port-of- Spain hospital by midday yesterday. Both had girls. While Black was unable to be interviewed because she was still in recovery, a broadly smiling McLatchie said she had dreamed of delivering her baby, who she has named, Catalayna, on New Year’s Day.

“I am proud to be one of those blessed to have children on New Year’s Day. I was trying to hold off on giving birth to see if it would happen, but God made it happen,” she said. Her due date was December 24, Christmas Eve.

“I had a normal delivery, but a long labour. From 9 am yesterday (December 31) until 7.33 am today (yesterday),” she said. Catalayna was born with a full head of hair.

McLatchie expets to get help with her baby from her eight-year-old daughter. My first daughter is eight so she would be able to help me out. That was why they (her children’s births) are spaced out like that. My New Year’s resolution is to be a better mother to both of my girls and to serve God more,” she said.

Acting Health Minister Dr Tim Gopeesingh, an experienced obstetrician/gynaecologist, was on hand to present hampers to the mothers at Port-of-Spain advising them of the importance of breast-feeding for at least one year.

“Babies who are breast-fed develop a beautiful immune response, therefore they’re less susceptible to infections,” he said.

Gopeesingh said the Health Ministry has been encouraging mothers to attend ante-natal clinics, while noting Caesarean sections were between 11 and 12 percent, in keeping with international standards, and adding that neo-natal and peri-natal mortality rates were declining.

Even as 2013 drew to a close, the maternity wards of the San Fernando and Port-of-Spain hospitals were in the midst of a baby boom as an estimated 25 babies were born on Old Year’s Day.

Commenting on the large number of births, Dr Krishna Rampersadsingh, head of the gynecological department at the SFGH, said the hospital regularly witnessed an estimated 15 births daily as more patients were choosing the hospital as opposed to top private medical centres to have their babies.

He said the department had expanded the number of specialist doctors on duty and had also received improved equipment to assist in the monitoring of patients.

“There must be planning for every delivery and this is what we are doing at the hospital for each and every delivery and this includes a close monitoring of the patients,” he said.

In full agreement was SWRHA director of health, Dr Shevanand Gopeesingh, who also observed more women were choosing the hospital since private medical centres often send patients to the hospital when complications occur.

“I think the population has come to realise that if they develop complications at the private clinics, they are sent to the hospital because we are equipped to deal with emergencies so they are opting to come to the hospital first,” he said.

Commenting on the number of births, Gopeesingh said on average there are 17,000 deliveries in the country per year. On average, Port-of-Spain hospital records the birth of 3,500 babies every year, with 1,000 to 1,500 babies being born at private hospitals.

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