Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Dad used earphones to deliver baby in Fife

Richard Cox with baby Emilie Image copyright Richard Cox
Image caption Richard Cox said his instincts kicked in as he helped deliver Emilie

A father who delivered his premature baby daughter on his bathroom floor used his earphones to tie the umbilical cord.

Richard Cox described how he helped his wife Hayley give birth to daughter Emilie when she was born prematurely at their home at Rosyth in Fife.

After dialling 999, a call handler offered advice until an ambulance crew arrived.

Emilie was born weighing just three pounds, 14 ounces.

"It all happened so quickly - my wife went into labour late at night and before I had time to dial for an ambulance she'd been born," said the 31-year-old bank worker.

"After Emilie arrived, I rang 999 and the call-handler said I needed to find a bit of string - such as a shoelace - to tie up the umbilical cord."

"The only thing I could find was my iPhone earphones - I tied them to the cord and it was fine. The call taker deserves all the credit.

"All while this happened, she was asking, is the baby breathing, is the baby okay? With all the noise in the background, she could have lost her cool as well.

"We had it in our mind that the child was not going to be breathing. All the actions of the Scottish Ambulance Service ensured that our little girl survived and I can never thank them enough."

Image copyright Richard Cox
Image caption Emilie spent her first weeks at a special care baby unit

The couple were at their Rosyth home, near Dunfermline, when Mrs Cox, 32, started to experience "intense" pain, lasting about 45 minutes. It was in the early hours of 8 January - and the baby was not due until 27 February.

The emergency call was taken by Jodie Craig and an ambulance was dispatched by supervisor, Lynne Walker.

Image copyright Richard Cox
Image caption Richard Cox believes the call handler and ambulance crew saved his daughter's life

Richard said: "They walked in the house when everything was so calm. One of the guys said that out of all the homes where babies have been delivered they have never been to one where it was so calm.

"Everyone played their part, from the call taker to the paramedics. They asked if I wanted to cut the cord; they were all really welcoming, and very reassuring. You never think you will be in this situation.

"It happened too fast, I could not grab the phone to call 999. At the hospital, I was saying I cannot believe this. I cannot remember if she was head first or what.

"The main priority was making sure she was breathing, and making sure her face was wiped. I did not appreciate she was born until the ambulance arrived. It's amazing how your instinct takes over.

"If not for the call handler and paramedics, she would not be here now."

Emilie was initially cared for at a special care baby unit but returned home a few weeks later and is doing well. Six months on, she now weighs 16lbs 12oz.

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