As if the thought of waking up from a medically induced coma wasn’t crazy enough, imagine waking up from a medically induced coma to find out you’ve given birth. That’s what happened to 27-year-old Angela Primachenko, who was 33 weeks pregnant when she was tested for COVID-19 on March 24. Eight days later, the respiratory therapist was seriously ill, hooked up to a ventilator and in a medically-induced coma.
To give Primachenko a stronger chance of survival and to protect her child, doctors at Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington, decided to induce labor. When Primachenko was eventually taken off the ventilator on April 6, she immediately realized that her baby had been born.
“Obviously, nobody expected that I was going to get that sick, so no, absolutely not, I did not expect to deliver my child,” she told Today’s Sheinelle Jones. “After all the medication and everything I just woke up and all of a sudden I didn’t have my belly any more. It was just extremely mind-blowing.
On April 10, Primachenko shared a message on Instagram to thank her friends and family for their gifts and support during “the most challenging” time.
Primachenko was released from the hospital on April 11, but her newborn daughter, Ava, remains in the neonatal intensive care unit. Primachenko, who also has an 11-month-old daughter named Emily, isn’t allowed in the NICU until she has had two tests showing that she is negative for COVID-19, though she has been able to see her baby girl via FaceTime. Luckily, Ava has tested negative for COVID-19.
On April 12, Primachenko shared a sweet photo of her daughter on Instagram. “Baby Ava is still in the NICU and i still haven’t been able to see her in person,” she wrote. “but so thankful for amazing nurses who send me update photos!!! @jennifer_ristau2 was able to take a pic of my baby girl for me!!! CANT WAIT TO MEET YOU my little fighter!!”
Primachenko’s twin sister Oksana, who has been sharing the remarkable story on her Instagram page, posted a photo of the sisters together on April 12. “Feels surreal posting a picture with Angela next to me,” Oksana wrote in the caption. “The last two weeks I wasn’t sure if I would ever take a new picture with her. I cherish @angela_primo more then ever. She is pure gold and I wouldn’t want a world without her.”
Oksana ended the post by writing about how much she is looking forward to meeting her little niece Ava.
Ava’s name is particularly apt, given her mother’s ordeal. “It means ‘breath of life,”’ Primachenko told Today. “So she’s our new little breath of life.”