Former self-proclaimed anti-vaxxer’s pregnant wife remains on life support, urges residents to get vaccinated

UPDATE: Dwayne Binette says doctors performed an emergency C-section Saturday on his wife, Krystal. The newbor…

UPDATE: Dwayne Binette says doctors performed an emergency C-section Saturday on his wife, Krystal. The newborn, Skylar, weighed in at just over three pounds.

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – A former self-described anti-vaxxer says if he knew a vaccine could save his wife’s life, he would have gotten it months ago.

Fort St. John resident Dwayne Binette is pleading with the community to get their COVID-19 vaccines while his pregnant wife lies alone on life support and doctors say she has a 10 per cent chance of surviving.

“We were pretty stubborn about not getting vaccinated because we just were like everybody else that [are considered] anti-vaxxers. There is not enough information for the long term, and we want more information,” said Binette.

Binette admits he has gotten in several arguments with people in favour of vaccinations through social media and believes the fight against vaccines is about people’s distrust in the government.

“We don’t trust what the government says around here because we’ve been screwed over so much. Also, there’s so much incorrect information out there right now.”

He believes everyone should at least take the time to speak with a doctor or nurse on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Once they get the correct information, they’ll know that if you get that, it may not save you from getting the virus, but it’ll save your life. We may not know the long-term effect right now, but short term, it’s life-saving.”

The Binettes were also worried about getting their vaccines because Dwayne’s wife is pregnant. Their perception changed after speaking to a doctor during a prenatal visit, and they planned on getting their vaccines when, unfortunately, they started getting sick.

Dwayne says everything happened quickly and started when his son came home from middle school earlier this month, saying he wasn’t feeling good. That same week, Dwayne and his wife started feeling ill.

The Friday before the Thanksgiving long weekend, the family got tested, and the results were positive. Dwayne described his symptoms as a “bad cold”, and says his son recovered in a few days, however, his wife’s symptoms got worse.

His wife arrived at the hospital at 2:30 p.m. on Thanksgiving Monday, and by 6 p.m., the hospital told Dwayne that they needed to transport her to Victoria General Hsopital. She is now in New Westminster.

“It seemed like she just had a really bad cold and had a hard time breathing. We didn’t think it was that bad. I was making dinner, and she’s going to come home for Thanksgiving dinner from the hospital.”

After two days in Victoria, Dwayne’s wife was on a ventilator for almost a week until she was put on a extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine, which helps patients breathe, giving their lungs a rest.

Dwayne says the doctors didn’t put her on ECMO right away as there were concerns for the baby. There were talks about having an emergency c-section to ease the pressure on her lungs, but doctors said there might be long-term disability effects as the baby is only 27 weeks old.

“The doctors in Victoria were pretty amazing. They just didn’t try to figure it out themselves. They searched all over, they called hospitals in Toronto, and they tried several different techniques and medicines before they ended up putting her on the ECMO machine.”

Dwayne says the baby is strong and is being monitored constantly, and the doctors hope that with his wife’s lungs not having to do any work, it will slowly repair itself.

Dwayne and his kids are currently in quarantine and are unable to visit.

“We can’t leave to go see my wife. My kids can’t see their mother because of all of this. So it makes it a lot worse when your family member is dying in the hospital, and you can’t go see them.”

The doctors told Dwayne that his 39-year-old wife, with no pre-existing medical conditions, has a 10 per cent chance of surviving.

Dwayne believes everyone should have been vaccinated months ago, but for those who are against it or are still unsure, he poses one question for them: “If you see your family member in jeopardy, would you not do what it would take to save their life ?”

Dwayne says he is just trying to get the word out in hopes that it could potentially save someone from dying.

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