A British woman who was separated from her newborn daughter after doctors in Spain expressed doubt that she was the child’s mother has been reunited with her baby after a DNA test confirming their connection.
Stacie Cottle, a 27-year-old dental nurse from London, said she was considering legal action against the hospital in Malaga, which allowed her only limited, supervised contact with her daughter for three weeks pending the DNA results.
Stacie was finally allowed full access to her daughter, Anzelika, on Tuesday after authorities received the results of the test. She said: “It was absolutely wonderful. She’s wonderful. She’s healthy and I’m just happy to be with her.”
When her daughter was seized last month Stacie said that she was ‘being tortured’ by the strictest of restrictions limiting her access to her daughter.
While awaiting the DNA test to prove her baby girl is hers, she felt constricted by bureaucratic red tape because local courts operate on snake thin numbers during the summer months.
Stacie said that she feared for her daughter Anzelika’s development, reporting that the three week old had been lying in a cot without any stimulation or fresh air since she arrived shortly after her birth.
She explained that she had to sleep in a separate ward, at the time she said: “I’m desperate to be with my baby. I feel like I’m being tortured on purpose.
“Everyone treats me like I am a baby thief.” She added: “I am treated like a criminal here, they think I stole my baby and everywhere I go in the hospital people are looking at me and talking about me.”
Anzelika was taken away on the orders of a paediatrician until a maternity DNA test can confirm whether or not Miss Cottle is her biological mother. Astonishingly, the family had not been provided any paperwork explaining why the baby is being held, under whose orders and what their rights were.
It is little wonder why she was feeling constricted as the Daily Mail also reported that the Spanish authorities’ restrictions meant:
• She was allowed to breastfeed every three hours under supervision, but must then hand the baby back
• She was banned from taking her outside, to any other room in the hospital or even up to the window for daylight
• She was not allowed to dress her or bring her any toys or clothes
• The baby’s grandmother could visit for one hour a day but only when the baby was sleeping and she was not to touch her
• Miss Cottle’s three-year-old daughter, who was staying with her grandmother, could not see her sister and could only meet her mother in the corridors or canteen for a few hours a day
Miss Cottle was staying at her mother Veronica’s apartment near the Costa del Sol resort of Torre del Mar when she suddenly went into labour two weeks early and had Anzelika after 40 minutes at around 2am.
But when they arrived at A&E in Velez-Malaga by taxi for a check-up the next day, doctors said it was ‘impossible’ the baby was hers.
Despite an ‘intrusive examination’ proving Miss Cottle had given birth, doctors insisted on carrying out a DNA test. The Hospital Comarcal de la Axarquia, even after almost three weeks of waiting had ‘no idea’ when the results would be back.
Miss Cottle said: “I just want to be with her. I want to be able to take her outside into the sun. She is a healthy baby – the worst place for her is a hospital and it is harming her.”
The family claim they have been treated badly because of their race, which the hospital ‘absolutely’ denies. A hospital source said the DNA test was the responsibility of the courts.
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