Ileana Fonta
June 2017
Perinatal Unit
Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
Los Angeles
United States




My story has to do with my son's birth. I had been a frequent guest of the L & D department since I was diagnosed with preeclampsia. During the many stays I had, I always had a good experience with the staff but Ileana made a lasting impression on me and my family. I was about to be discharged after experiencing some pre-E symptoms but Ileana was performing one last heart rate monitor test on my baby. I was 33 weeks pregnant at the time. During the test, she felt that the baby was not producing the same heart rate activity that he had in the past so she kept the test going for a longer period of time. The doctor on the floor at that time had given the OK for me to be discharged despite the minimal spikes in the baby's heart monitoring.
I was changing to go home when Ileana came into my room and told me to give her a few more minutes. She explained to my husband and me that she was not comfortable with me going home given the baby's activity. She went to her charge nurse to discuss her concerns and within a few minutes, I was back in bed and told that a thorough ultrasound would be done to check on the baby. The ultrasound showed that the baby was not moving. My high-risk OBGYN was brought in and I had a C-section that same night. My doctor decided that the baby could not tolerate a vaginal birth because of the baby's heart rate. My husband and I truly feel that Ileana saved my son's life. If she had not trusted her instincts and been an advocate for my son, and me there is a chance that my baby wouldn't be here today. She will always hold a special place in my heart. Her actions and her attitude were a blessing to our family and she truly deserves this recognition.