Filipino mother in Dubai seeks help for prematurely born baby’s huge bills

DUBAI –  A Filipina mother who prematurely gave birth to her baby boy over complications is now facing fears of violating the law as the prospect of a bounced security cheque looms in the near horizon.

Dubai-based Lorie Relano, 35, is desperate to clear a hospital bill of over Dh138,000 which she and her husband owes to Latifa Hospital.

The couple told XPRESS that Luke, their second child, was born ahead of his term in the 28th week of gestation after her blood pressure spiked and led to complications.

Lorie said she was doing just fine, but seven months into her pregnancy, her blood pressure shot up to an abnormal level. Her husband rushed her to three private hospitals, but they refused to accept her on the ground that she was a high risk patient or that they did not have an NICU facility. She said she almost lost her life and that of her son, but thanks to Latifa Hospital, they were admitted and managed to save their lives.

Luke was born on November 12 through a C-section, and weighed just 900 grams. The baby suffered from respiratory distress syndrome and needed incubation and oxygen support; battling it out for over seven weeks. They were ready for discharge on December 28 when Luke’s weight reached 1.7 kg.

“By this time, I owed the hospital Dh138,546 and had to leave a security cheque with them to take Luke home,” Lorie said.

Their ordeal was far from over as on January 12, the baby went pale again and had to be rushed to Emergency again where he was diagnosed with pneumonia and had to undergo further treatment.

Presently, Luke is back home, but Lorie said the unpaid hospital bills are weighing her down.

“I do not have money in the bank to pay. My husband and I together earn Dh9,000 a month, but that is barely enough to pay off our loans, house rent and services of a baby sitter for our first child. With difficulty, we might be able to pay up to Dh1,000 a month, but that will take ages to clear the dues,” said Lorie, who works in the accounts department of a private firm.

Her fear of violating the law is growing with every passing day, causing her much stress, and appeals for help to clear the hospital bill.

If you wish to help the family, please write to [email protected]