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'Stillborn' found alive in coffin

A mother in Argentina says she fell to her knees in shock after finding her baby alive in a coffin in the morgue nearly 12 hours after the girl had been declared dead.

Analia Bouter named her newborn Luz Milagros, or "Miracle Light." The tiny girl, born 3 months premature, was in critical but improving condition Wednesday in the same hospital where the staff pronounced her stillborn on April 3.

The case became public Tuesday when Rafael Sabatinelli, the deputy health minister in the northern province of Chaco, announced at a news conference that five medical professionals involved have been suspended pending an official investigation.

Bouter told the TeleNoticias TV channel in an interview Tuesday night that doctors gave her the death certificate just 20 minutes after the baby was born and that she still hasn't received a birth certificate for her daughter.

Bouter said the baby was quickly put in a coffin and taken to the morgue's refrigeration room. Twelve hours passed before she and her husband were able to open the coffin to say their last goodbyes.

She said that's when the baby trembled. She thought it was her imagination -- then she realized the little girl was alive and dropped to her knees on the morgue floor in shock.

A morgue worker quickly picked up the girl and confirmed she was alive. Then, Bouter's brother grabbed the baby and ran to the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit, shouting for the doctors. The baby was so cold, Bouter said, that "it was like carrying a bottle of ice."

A week later, the baby is improving. Bouter said she had given birth normally to four other children and doesn't understand why doctors gave her general anesthesia this time.

She said the family plans to sue the staff at Hospital Perrando in the city of Resistencia for malpractice, and still wants answers.

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