Lindsey Ford's infant son, Munro, was 5 days old when something she knew helped save his life: CPR.
Ford, a Green Cove Springs resident, had taken Munro with her to pick up her daughter at school when he started crying. She said when she turned around, she saw secretions coming out of his nose and mouth.
“All of a sudden his lips turned blue, and (he) went, 'Uh, uh, uh,' and he wasn't breathing,” Ford recalled. “My first instinct was to put my mouth on him, suck out what I could of all the mucus, and then I started doing CPR right there.”
Ford (pictured holding Munro) grabbed her daughter and raced home, pulling over twice in the 10-minute drive to give Munro CPR. But he still wasn't breathing properly, so she yelled for her boyfriend, who was mowing the lawn, to jump in the driver's seat, and she gave her son CPR two more times on the way to the Wolfson Children's ER at the Baptist Clay Medical Campus.
The medical team immediately took over.
“The nurse told me if I didn't do what I was doing prior to getting him to the hospital I wouldn’t have the son that I have,” Ford said. “He wouldn't have had enough oxygen to his brain, basically, and I would have a baby not like him today."
Dr. Shareen Ismail was one of the ER doctors who jumped in to save the newborn.
“When they get sick, they get sick very quickly, so the ability to intervene very quickly can be the difference between life and death,” Ismail said. “So just (knowing) basic CPR and administering oxygen, being able to get the heart rate going again just on scene, is very important."
Ismail told Ford that Munro's breathing issues were a form of apnea. It's not not uncommon in newborns, but if left untreated, it could lead to serious neurological effects.
Ismail encourages everyone, especially parents, to be CPR certified.
“Now that we're in the summer, it's incredibly hot, and unfortunately (we've) seen a lot of children with heatstroke and hypothermia, so it's important to be able to keep those children nice and cool,” Ismail said.
Ismail said it's also important to know what might pose a choking hazard to a child and to remember the dangers of swimming pools.
“We see (drownings) a lot in the summer, so being able to know what to do immediately can really make the difference between life and death,” Ismail said.
Ford called it maternal instinct. Munro, now 6 weeks old, spent a day and a half on a ventilator and is now back home with his mom.
“He's good now, and he's healthy and happy,” Ford said. “I think everyone should know CPR and how to save their kids."