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Mom Wakes to Baby Missing from Hospital Room, Finds Daughter in Another Patient's Arms

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Being a parent is tough. Throw in a scary medical situation with the run of the mill scary parenting moments and one can understand why a parent or family could be run down.

In these situations we often have to trust strangers. Doctors, nurses and others who we don’t know but we trust because of their role, training, and the medical culture that is around them.

But “stranger danger” is still thing a parent has to worry about, no matter the situation. And when your child is sick, you want to make sure the strangers you are trusting your child too are those trained professionals.

This is not only for your own peace of mind but for the security of your child. Waking to find your child missing and in the arms of a stranger — while you are in the hospital for a medical concern — can be overwhelming.

“Neither of us had slept in quite a while, with all the chaos of a hospital, exams, blood work and other testing to find out what was wrong with her,” she explained. “So when I finally got her to rest, I myself laid down as well,” said Lory Beth Snyder.

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Snyder had brought her daughter to the hospital for some breathing problems. She was worried and hoped the trained professionals would bring her some peace of mind.

When Snyder woke up an hour after getting her daughter down, she was shocked to not find her daughter not in the room. Snyder went looking and found her daughter in the arms of a fellow patient she did not know, referred to only as Ms. Harris.

Snyder reports six or seven nurses were gathered around playing with her and that the contents of her diaper bag were spread all around.

“I proceed to take Lorelai out of her arms. Even though she persisted that I return to my room, without Lorelai, she stated repeatedly that I needed to just go rest. I told her, no that I was fine and I would be taking my daughter back now.

I removed Lorelai from her arms, and the nurses who had been standing around gathered up her things, because along with taking Lorelai she also took my diaper bag (which had been emptied around her room), IV pole, and crib Lorelai was in sleeping in,” Snyder reports.



Heading back to her room, three nurses as well as Harris followed Snyder back to her room, insisting they meant no harm and that Lorelai was in no harm.

The nurses had to remove Harris from the room and Snyder and Lorelai were later moved to a secure unit in the ICU. Snyder is still left with questions.

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“While I honestly don’t know if Ms Harris’ intentions were noble, since she claims to of [sic] just been trying to care for Lorelai. I don’t know what she herself was ill with, something that could make my daughter sick. I don’t know anything! I don’t know what her actual intent with my child was. What she did with her. Or even how long she actually had her.”

Snyder was able to contact the police but was told their was nothing they were able to do as no crime had been committed. The hospital is doing an internal investigation but is unable to comment until that is complete.

A police officer who responded to the situation reported Harris was not harming the child. In addition, she provided the child with a blanket and gave the child back to the nurses when asked.

In a statement, the hospital said the nurses responded to the situation appropriately. I feel Snyder might disagree with that.

Whatever the intentions to take a person’s child without permission is dangerous. Perhaps Harris had the best of intentions, but one hopes she can understand why a parent would find that unnerving.

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