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by | Jan 13, 2019 | Breaking News, Crime, Health, News | 0 comments

Newly released audio from a 911 call gives a glimpse into the frantic scene at a Phoenix, Arizona, health care facility after a woman who had been in a vegetative state for 27 years gave birth.

Five minutes of audio from the 911 call made Dec. 29 from Hacienda Healthcare were released Friday, The Associated Press reported. The call spurred Phoenix police to begin a sexual assault investigation.

The unnamed nurse screamed into the phone at the 911 dispatcher: “The baby’s turning blue! Baby’s turning blue!” She urged the paramedics to come faster: “We’re not prepared for this.”

In most cases, a patient going into labor at a health-care facility in a room full of nurses would be a stressful but manageable situation.

But the 29-year-old new mother at the center of the crisis unfolding at Hacienda HealthCare a few days after Christmas was a special — and especially dangerous — case: She had been in a persistent vegetative state since 1992.

“One of the patients just had a baby, and we had no idea she was pregnant,” the nurse said.

She said the infant wasn’t responsive and that other nurses were giving the baby CPR. The nurse repeatedly told the dispatcher that the delivery was a “complete surprise.

“About four minutes into the call, a baby can be heard crying in the background.

“Oh, the baby’s breathing. Oh, my God. Thank God,” the nurse said, sounding relieved.

It’s unclear whether the nurse heard in the call regularly cares for the incapacitated woman.

Both the woman and the baby boy are recovering in a hospital, KPHO-TV reported.

Police and the facility are trying to identify the baby’s father — the person responsible for the sexual assault on a vulnerable adult.

Hacienda “will accept nothing less than a full accounting of this absolutely horrifying situation, an unprecedented case that has devastated everyone involved, from the victim and her family to Hacienda staff at every level of our organization,” Gary Orman, a member of Hacienda’s board of directors, said in the statement.

That “full accounting” is ongoing. Hacienda’s chief executive, Bill Timmons, resigned. And police have obtained warrants to compel Hacienda’s male staff members to provide DNA samples.

The revelation that a woman in a vegetative state was raped inside a care facility has horrified many, the AP reported. The Hacienda Healthcare CEO resigned earlier this week, and the facility announced new safety measures, including not allowing male staff members to enter the rooms of female patients without a female staff member present.

The woman’s family members, who are members of the San Carlos Apache tribe, released a statement through their attorney saying they are “outraged, traumatized and in shock by the abuse and neglect of their daughter at Hacienda Healthcare,” and that they are “not emotionally ready to make a public statement,” KPHO-TV reported.

The news has put the facility — started in the 1960s as Hacienda de los Angeles, or “the dwelling of the angels” — under a harsh spotlight.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey’s office released a statement saying the reports are “deeply troubling.” In addition to working with police, state officials are “reevaluating the state’s contract and regulatory authority as it relates to this facility and have been working closely with state agencies to ensure all necessary safety measures are in place,” Patrick Ptak, a spokesman for Ducey (R), said in a statement.

The state’s Department of Economic Security dispatched a team to conduct health and safety checks at the facility, and the Department of Health Services has beefed up safety measures: more staff, increased monitoring and stronger security.

That is not enough for some families.

Karina Cesena, the mother of another Hacienda patient, told Phoenix independent news station KTVK that she is sleeping in her 22-year-old daughter’s room until the assailant is found.

Cesena’s daughter has a traumatic brain injury that causes hundreds of seizures a day.

“I do not [know if my daughter was victimized], but I do ask her, and she can answer yes or no,” Cesena told the news station. “She is not able to walk or talk yet, but she does understand.”

About Hacienda HealthCare, Cesena said: “Trust has been broken. Trust has definitely been broken.”

The woman who gave birth had come to Hacienda when she was 2, after nearly drowning. Crucial questions about her care remain unanswered.

Chief among them: How could nurses providing round-the-clock medical care not notice that one of their patients’ was pregnant?

The surprise of the facility’s employees was evident in the 911 call.

Near the end, another employee walked up to the nurse on the phone with 911 dispatchers and inquired about the crisis.

“Who had a baby?” the woman asked the now-calmer nurse on the phone.

“Look,” was the reply. “There’s a baby right there!”

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