22-Month-Old Left Permanently Brain Damaged After Choking On Apple Slice

A mother of twins from New Zealand regularly sent her children to daycare without any worries about their safety. Marama Renata trusted the workers at the daycare and the twins seemed to enjoy their fellow classmates. Besides, Marama needed the daycare in order to continue working as a doctor. Everything changed one fateful day when Marama received a call from the daycare. The staff was trying to revive her 22-month-old son with CPR. Neihana Renata had choked on a piece of peeled apple. Neihana was rushed to the hospital to receive professional medical attention. His mother met her son at the hospital as fast as possible. She learned that her son had sustained permanent brain damage after being starved of oxygen for half an hour. This eventually caused his body into cardiac arrest. Doctors weren’t hopeful about Neihana’s condition, and he spent several days in the intensive care unit. Although he was unresponsive for a majority of this time, he eventually pulled through. Despite all of his medical challenges, Neihana ended up surviving the incident. Today, he isn’t able to talk, feed himself, or walk. He is suffering from severe cerebral palsy and has a hypoxic brain injury. Marama decided to quit her job at the school clinic in order to care for her song full-time. His condition requires around-the-clock care and attention. After news of the incident spread, investigators began questioning the role that the daycare played. The Little Lights Early Learning Centre made the decision to serve their children raw apples. It is common knowledge that these harder foods can be hazardous and even deadly for young toddlers. Marama is concerned as nothing seems to be changing to correct this wrong. This is not the first time that a child in New Zealand has been harmed by eating an apple. In response to a child’s death from eating an apple, the country’s Ministry of Health issued a new set of guidelines to help decrease the risk of choking in daycares. It was recommended that harder foods like carrots, celery, and apples be cooked or grated. Wi Renata is pleased with the recommendations set forth by the Ministry of Health, but he is not convinced that these guidelines are being enforced. Wi and Marama Renata are emploring daycares to follow these guidelines in order to reduce a child’s risk of choking.