"if they didn't deliver as soon as possible, my baby wouldn't make it."
A Birmingham-based couple is facing a £100,000 medical bill after their baby was prematurely born in a Dubai hospital.
Azhar Saleem, aged 26, and Syeda Khola Adnan, aged 23, have been told that they cannot take their baby daughter Amal home until they start paying the money.
The child was born at around 23 weeks through emergency caesarean and weighed just 14 ounces.
Mr Saleem and Ms Adnan were married in Dubai during December 2018 and she became pregnant whilst in the UK a month later.
Ms Adnan, who was on a visit visa, went back to Dubai in March to apply for a spouse visa in order for her to move to England and give birth there.
But, she said her application was rejected as they submitted the incorrect information based on wrong advice from their solicitor.
The couple appealed the decision in the hope that it would be overturned by October 2019, when Amal was due.
However, on July 14, 2019, Ms Adnan was rushed to the hospital for an emergency caesarean.
The mother-to-be had attended an appointment with a foetal specialist at NMC Royal Hospital when doctors found that her baby’s heart rate and blood pressure was dropping, causing her to be immediately admitted there.
Ms Adnan explained:
“[She was] the tiniest but most beautiful little baby. Twenty-three weeks premature weighing only 400 grams and the size of my hand.
“We initially wanted to go to a government hospital but because of how quickly events unfolded this was no longer an option.”
Her husband added:
“Everything spiralled so quickly we didn’t have the choice because they advised if they didn’t deliver as soon as possible, my baby wouldn’t make it.”
The couple, who do not have insurance, have received a £100,000 medical bill. As Amal’s care continues, the bill could increase to £200,000.
They have claimed that the Dubai hospital will not allow them to spread the cost over any more than a year, meaning they may have to pay over £16,000 each month.
Mr Saleem works in the UK so he is unable to be with his wife in Dubai. He must supply six months of payslips in order to secure a spouse visa for her.
The couple has set up a crowdfunding page in the hope that they would be able to pay off even a small amount of what they owe. Ms Adnan said:
“We really need help to bring my baby home, any kind of help would be appreciated.
“You don’t realise the situations you can find yourself in until you find yourself in them.”
“I have never thought of asking for help before in my life, but sometimes you have to bite the bullet and your pride and do everything you can to bring your loved ones, in this instance our baby home.”
The Metro reported that on the GoFundMe page, documents have said that even though Amal is “extremely immature”, she is showing “stable vital signs”, with normal blood gases, glucose, and electrolytes.