She had a baby shower at a fancy hotel. It had disastrous consequences for her unborn baby.

It was supposed to be a swanky, safe affair for an expectant mother. But it went so very wrong.

A group of women gathered at one of Melbourne’s most prestigious hotels for a baby shower earlier this month.

They had booked in for high tea at The Langham hotel in Southbank — a luxury $75/head experience generally reserved for special occasions like birthdays, hen’s events and girly catch-ups.

But the July 12 event was disrupted in the most devastating of ways.

An outbreak of Salmonella left the group sick, and the mother-to-be’s unborn child so distressed it had to be delivered prematurely.

The Langham salmonella
Image via iStock

The pregnant woman was admitted to hospital after developing symptoms of the food poisoning. As it became clear her unborn baby’s condition was deteriorating, doctors had to deliver him five weeks early.

Related: Dad makes his premature baby an adorable superhero costume.

To add to the woman’s devastation, she was unable to touch her newborn baby for days while she remained contagious, the Herald Sun reports. Her tiny son, meanwhile, spent time in an oxygen chamber struggling with breathing problems.

The Langham is a five-star hotel. (Image via Facebook)

According to the Herald Sun, the little boy has also required regular antibiotic injections.


“If I hadn’t gone into hospital on Monday, my baby could have been dead by Tuesday,” the new mother told the publication.

Related: A mum’s first cuddle with her baby, born three months premature.

The newspaper reports the young mother has been left “traumatised” and was due to be discharged from hospital yesterday.

The Langham, on Melbourne’s Southbank. (Photo: Facebook)

The toll from the Melbourne salmonella outbreak rose to 44 yesterday, when the health department confirmed that more than half of those who went to one of five high tea sessions at the hotel over the July 11-12 weekend fell sick, Fairfax Media reports.

At least six of those people have been hospitalised.

Victoria’s Acting Chief Health Officer Professor Michael Ackland told ABC News he expected the salmonella toll to rise.

“We would encourage anyone who has become ill following a meal at that premises to present themselves to their local doctor and appropriate tests will be done,” Professor Ackland said. “In older people and people who are unwell or immunocompromised, salmonella infection can be a very severe problem and in some instances can lead to death,” he added.

“We take this matter very seriously.”

The Langham is one of Melbourne’s most luxurious hotels. Image: Facebook.

Professor Ackland said that the Langham, a five-star establishment, had cooperated with investigations and employed “very strict” food safety requirements.

“The standards and the requirements for these food premises are very strict indeed and I’m very satisfied that The Langham hotel has complied with all our regulatory requirements in ensuring that the food that it serves to its clients is safe and good to eat,” he said.

Professor Ackland added that it could take weeks to isolate the exact cause of the outbreak, Fairfax reports.

Salmonella, a form of gastroenteritis that can be contracted after having undercooked poultry or undercooked eggs, has a series of nasty symptoms including diarrhoea, vomiting, dehydration, fever, headache, stomach cramps and nausea.

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