A 29-year-old expectant mother almost lost her baby after becoming seriously ill with Salmonella poisoning after a luxury high tea baby shower at the Langham Hotel in Melbourne.
Her condition deteriorated, and doctors were forced to deliver her baby five weeks premature.
“If I hadn’t gone into hospital on Monday my baby could have been dead by Tuesday,” she told the Herald Sun.
The newborn has suffered breathing problems following his traumatic birth and spent time in an oxygen chamber, and has also been receiving regular antibiotic injections.
It is hoped he will be discharged in good health in the next fortnight.
His mother has been unable to touch him while she remained ill, and contagious. She was due to be discharged from hospital last night.
“I’m really angry because it was the Langham. I didn’t have my baby shower at a back-alley Springvale kebab shop. I’ve had a baby and he is hopefully going to be fine, but this has been the worst week of my life,” she said.
Samples of gourmet chicken sandwiches, mayonnaise and salads that were served to at least 77 guests at the Langham high teas were being forensically examined for a cause.
“There were things like chicken sandwiches and foods with mayonnaise preparations, and various other foods you typically see in a smorgasbord setting, such as salads. (But) it is just not possible for me to point at any one food at the moment,” Prof Ackland said.
Melbourne woman Tanya LaManna was one of several members of her family who ate at the Langham on that weekend and fell ill.
She spent six days in hospital after recording a 41C temperature.
“It was quite scary, actually, very scary,” husband Greg LaManna told 3AW radio.
“We didn’t know what was going on.”
Ms LaManna is recovering at home and only started eating two days ago, he said.
The investigation will initially focus on egg, chicken and mayonnaise-containing foods – usual suspects for salmonella – on the menu that weekend.