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Couple who took out $98k in personal loans in a bid to fund six rounds of IVF welcome miracle twins

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couple who took out 98k in personal loans in a bid to fund six rounds of ivf welcome miracle twins

A couple who took out personal loans in a bid to fund $98,000 on IVF finally have their dream family after welcoming their miracle twins.

Ashley Howard-Heimbuch, 34, and her husband, Alex Heimbuch, 35, from Detroit, took out personal loans and held dozens of fundraising events over the last three years to fund the thousands they have spent on IVF.

After a year of trying to get pregnant on their own, Ashley and Alex first sought help in January 2018 where they discovered that both of Ashley’s Fallopian tubes were blocked and were given a zero per cent chance of naturally conceiving.

Ashley Howard-Heimbuch, 34, and husband, Alex Heimbuch, 35, have welcomed miracle twins after taking out $98,000 in personal loans to pay for six rounds of IVF

Ashley Howard-Heimbuch, 34, and husband, Alex Heimbuch, 35, have welcomed miracle twins after taking out $98,000 in personal loans to pay for six rounds of IVF

After years of trying to conceive, the couple have finally have their dream family - having been told by doctors in 2018 that they had a zero per cent chance of conceiving naturally

After years of trying to conceive, the couple have finally have their dream family – having been told by doctors in 2018 that they had a zero per cent chance of conceiving naturally

But in 2019 the couple were over the moon when their sixth round of IVF worked and they welcomed their twin boys in June 2020 – River Heimbuch, weighing 5lbs 11oz and Brooks Heimbuch, weighing 5lbs 2oz.

Ashley said: ‘Over the past nearly three years we have accumulated medical bills of around $75,000 by trying to become parents, as we had next to no insurance coverage.

‘We had taken out around $20,000 in loans to help us with the costs of our medical bills and achieve our dream of starting a family, the rest was paid with cash, that we raised by holding fundraisers, and credit cards.

‘After going through the first few rounds of IVF, I became a pro when it came to all the physical effects. I got used to the tiredness, nausea and pain from the shots.

After a year of trying to get pregnant on their own, the couple was told that both of Ashley's Fallopian tubes were blocked so they turned to IVF and conceived twins River and Brooks

After a year of trying to get pregnant on their own, the couple was told that both of Ashley’s Fallopian tubes were blocked so they turned to IVF and conceived twins River and Brooks

Ashley, pictured with her husband and their twins, said she 'became a pro when it came to all the physical effects' of IVF and quickly got use to 'tiredness, nausea and pain from the shots'

Ashley, pictured with her husband and their twins, said she ‘became a pro when it came to all the physical effects’ of IVF and quickly got use to ‘tiredness, nausea and pain from the shots’

During their penultimate round of IVF, after four previous unsuccessful attempts, their doctor discovered a benign tumor on Ashley's uterus and they had to abandon their fifth IVF attempt

During their penultimate round of IVF, after four previous unsuccessful attempts, their doctor discovered a benign tumor on Ashley’s uterus and they had to abandon their fifth IVF attempt

‘The mental effects were more difficult than the physical side. 

‘I become really disconnected and I was just going through the motions of the process that I had been through over and over again.’

During their penultimate round of IVF, after four previous unsuccessful attempts, the couple’s doctor discovered a benign tumor on Ashley’s uterus. 

As a result of this, their fifth round of IVF had to be abandoned halfway through.

‘I then had to have surgery which removed 50 per cent of the tumor and I was on medication for almost two months to minimize the tumor further,’ Ashley said.

The couple began their sixth and final round of IVF in October last year and it was successful. To their disbelief, they found out that they were pregnant with twins

The couple began their sixth and final round of IVF in October last year and it was successful. To their disbelief, they found out that they were pregnant with twins

After discovering the tumor, Ashley had to have surgery which removed 50 per cent of the tumor and she was on medication for almost two months

After discovering the tumor, Ashley had to have surgery which removed 50 per cent of the tumor and she was on medication for almost two months 

After the surgery, Ashley changed her mindset and went back to IVF, determined to remain positive about conceiving - and it was that final sixth round that proved successful

After the surgery, Ashley changed her mindset and went back to IVF, determined to remain positive about conceiving – and it was that final sixth round that proved successful

‘I was in complete shock when they found it, I felt so defeated. 

‘I thought to myself, what else can go wrong? 

‘I could not believe that it had been overlooked so many times before, because the doctor at the time told us it had been there and growing for a while.

‘I had a pity party for a few days, I was constantly thinking that if this was found before we could have been successful earlier and saved so much money.

‘But I had to change my mindset, I had to think that this could be the answer to the problems. I was a lot more hopeful and positive after that.’

Ashley and Alex were stunned when they were told they had conceived twins River and Brooks who were born in June 2020 weighing 5lbs 11oz and 5lbs 2oz, respectively

Ashley and Alex were stunned when they were told they had conceived twins River and Brooks who were born in June 2020 weighing 5lbs 11oz and 5lbs 2oz, respectively

Ashley and Alex were stunned when they were told they had conceived twins River and Brooks who were born in June 2020 weighing 5lbs 11oz and 5lbs 2oz, respectively

Despite being over the moon to have conceived finally, Ashley had a terrible pregnancy and ended up needing lifesaving surgery at 14 weeks

Despite being over the moon to have conceived finally, Ashley had a terrible pregnancy and ended up needing lifesaving surgery at 14 weeks

Ashley was in was in hospital for almost a month after the surgery because she developed a number of complications including Group B Strep and E-coli

Ashley was in was in hospital for almost a month after the surgery because she developed a number of complications including Group B Strep and E-coli

The couple began their sixth and final round of IVF in October last year and it was successful. To their disbelief, they found out that they were pregnant with twins. 

‘We were so thrilled after everything we had been through; I was so relieved that we had finally done it.

‘We were not just going to have one baby, we were having two. I could not believe it. 

‘I ended up having a really terrible pregnancy. I had to have lifesaving surgery at 14 weeks after being diagnosed with a very rare pregnancy condition called Incarcerated Uterus.

After she returned home, Ashley was on bedrest and developed severe anxiety and PTSD for the rest of my pregnancy

After she returned home, Ashley was on bedrest and developed severe anxiety and PTSD for the rest of my pregnancy

Ashley is pictured having an IVF shot administered by Alex while the couple were trying to get pregnant

Ashley is pictured having an IVF shot administered by Alex while the couple were trying to get pregnant 

Ashley(right) and Alex with their children River and Brooks, who they 'love fiercely' after years of trying to conceive

Ashley(right) and Alex with their children River and Brooks, who they ‘love fiercely’ after years of trying to conceive

Ashley says she is now struggling with post-natal depression but is taking it one day at a time

Ashley says she is now struggling with post-natal depression but is taking it one day at a time

‘I was in hospital for almost a month after the surgery because I developed complications like Group B Strep and E-coli. 

‘After I returned home I was on bedrest and developed severe anxiety and PTSD for the rest of my pregnancy. 

‘Because of the condition we were told to brace ourselves as we would probably lose the twins. Luckily that did not happen.  

‘On June 19 2020 I had a C-section, and my twin boys were born, Brooks and River. We love them so much and we feel so grateful to have them here with us. 

‘Now that River and Brooks are here, I am struggling with post-natal depression. 

‘There are good days and bad days but I am doing the best I can and loving my boys fiercly.’

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Coronavirus vaccines are ‘game changers,’ says Karol Sikora

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coronavirus vaccines are game changers says karol sikora
Professor Karol Sikora, a consultant oncologist and Professor of Medicine at the University of Buckingham Medical School, hails new coronavirus vaccines [File photo]

Professor Karol Sikora, a consultant oncologist and Professor of Medicine at the University of Buckingham Medical School, hails new coronavirus vaccines [File photo]

Professor Karol Sikora, a consultant oncologist and Professor of Medicine at the University of Buckingham Medical School, hails new coronavirus vaccines [File photo]

As this extraordinary year enters its final weeks, the gloom is beginning to recede. Even in the darkness of winter, there is light at the end of the tunnel – and it is becoming brighter.

The start of this week has brought an array of good news which appears to herald the conquest of the coronavirus. Across the country, the number of new cases and hospital admissions are in decline. The national lockdown is being eased. Best of all, potent new vaccines are proving more effective than even the most optimistic expectations suggested.

In the fight against Covid, the words ‘game changer’ have been deployed too often, particularly by our Government which has made a habit of overpromising and underdelivering, as shown by the controversies over the testing regime and the supply of protective gear. But the term can certainly be used about the heroic recent development of vaccines.

In a remarkably short period of time, researchers are building a formidable pharmaceutical arsenal against the virus.

Earlier this month, the American giant Pfizer and German company BioNTech made the historic announcement that their pioneering vaccine had achieved a 95 per cent success rate in preliminary trials.

That breakthrough was soon followed by the US firm Moderna, which revealed last week that early tests of its new vaccine also indicate that it is effective in 95 per cent of cases. Both are now in production ready for swift distribution, subject to approval by the regulatory authorities.

Two US pharmaceutical giants have announced positive results in coronavirus vaccine trials, along with the UK's AstraZeneca in partnership with Oxford University

Two US pharmaceutical giants have announced positive results in coronavirus vaccine trials, along with the UK's AstraZeneca in partnership with Oxford University

Two US pharmaceutical giants have announced positive results in coronavirus vaccine trials, along with the UK’s AstraZeneca in partnership with Oxford University 

Now, closer to home, comes the uplifting news that the vaccine made by the British partnership of Oxford University and AstraZeneca looks certain to provide a vast additional store of anti-Covid ammunition.

The Prime Minister was right yesterday to hail the ‘incredibly exciting news’. Already, there are four million doses ready to go once approval is given, while the Government has pre-ordered 100 million jabs.

The Oxford vaccine may not be quite as effective as the Pfizer and Moderna ones, but it has two great advantages over them.

First, it is far cheaper to produce, with each jab costing about £3, compared with £15 for Pfizer’s and £25 for Moderna’s. Second, it will be far easier to store and distribute, because it can be kept at the temperature of a normal fridge, whereas the Pfizer vaccine must be kept at -70C (-94F).

The news of the vaccines, along with a decline in new cases and hospital admissions in the UK is a light at the end of the tunnel, Professor Sikora says. Pictured: A man is taken to Grange University Hospital in Wales [File photo]

The news of the vaccines, along with a decline in new cases and hospital admissions in the UK is a light at the end of the tunnel, Professor Sikora says. Pictured: A man is taken to Grange University Hospital in Wales [File photo]

The news of the vaccines, along with a decline in new cases and hospital admissions in the UK is a light at the end of the tunnel, Professor Sikora says. Pictured: A man is taken to Grange University Hospital in Wales [File photo]

That difference would be welcome enough for Britain’s roll-out programme, but it will be an even more crucial factor in the developing world, where refrigeration and transport facilities are limited.

There is no doubt that after the long, painful months of contagion and lockdown, our prospects are suddenly looking much more optimistic. The Covid cycle can be broken and the disease almost eradicated. These powerful vaccines will not only protect people but will also halt the transmission of the virus worldwide once the full immunisation programmes are under way. Already AstraZeneca has pledged to make three billion doses next year.

One thing I remain vehemently opposed to is any form of mandatory vaccinations, or making it impossible for life to function without one.

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock took over from Prime Minister Boris Johnson's announcement of a tiered system to replace lockdown in parliament on Monday

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock took over from Prime Minister Boris Johnson's announcement of a tiered system to replace lockdown in parliament on Monday

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock took over from Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement of a tiered system to replace lockdown in parliament on Monday

It has to be a choice and looking at the polling, there should be no issues in getting the numbers required. Forcing people to take the vaccine would be morally unthinkable and cause huge resentment which would only force more problems than it solved.

The whole Covid landscape has been transformed. According to the Office of National Statistics, the incidence of coronavirus infections appears to ‘have levelled off’ in recent weeks.

Similarly, the number of hospital admissions for Covid has fallen significantly, easing the pressures on the NHS. That is particularly welcome because it means that the health service can resume its proper responsibility, by providing treatment for all patients.

The energies of the state should now be concentrated on the roll-out of the immunisation programme, not on the implementation of ever more exquisitely complex bureaucratic restrictions.

Yesterday, Boris Johnson announced that the second lockdown – whose value has never been proved, because the previous tier system was working as intended – would end on December 2, but would be replaced by a tough new system.

There are issues with it, but this is far, far better than a nationwide lockdown. The curfew pushed back, the self-isolation system reformed, a return of fans to sports grounds and more. Sense has prevailed on some issues, but the continued assault on our hospitality sector is unjustified.

With further tweaks, the tier system can carry us through until the vaccines can protect the vulnerable, while allowing some semblance of normality until then.

But the absolute priority for the Government should be to ensure that we now have a world-beating vaccine production and distribution system to match the British people’s desire to return to the ‘old normal’. And that is now within touching distance.

 

Professor Sikora is a consultant oncologist and Professor of Medicine at the University of Buckingham Medical School.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Romanian sex worker claimed =she had ‘f*** all’ to do with £25m Tamara Ecclestone gems raid 

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romanian sex worker claimed she had f all to do with 25m tamara ecclestone gems raid

A Romanian sex worker accused of involvement in the £25million gems raid at Tamara Ecclestone’s mansion told police: ‘I have f*** all to do with it.’

Maria Mester, 47, is accused of being one of the ‘support team’ for the burglars who had travelled from Italy to break into the celebrities’ homes last December.

She and her barman son Emile-Bogdan Savastru, 30, were filmed on CCTV with the alleged raiders in the days before and after the Ecclestone raid at the F1 heiress’ £70million mansion near Hyde Park.

Isleworth Crown Court has heard that she was arrested at Stansted Airport wearing a pair of stolen earrings on January 31.

She also posted a photograph of herself wearing one of the stolen necklaces on Facebook, jurors have heard.

Savastru was caught in possession of a Tag Heuer watch and Louis Vuitton bag, similar to one taken in the raid, and was planning to board a flight to Japan, it is claimed.

Mester and Savastru, along with security worker Sorin Marcovici, 53, and Alexandru Stan, 49, all deny involvement in the raids.

36048654 8981907 image m 34 1606227770967

36048654 8981907 image m 34 1606227770967

Maria Mester, 47, is accused of being one of the ‘support team’ for the burglars who had travelled from Italy to break into the celebrities’ homes last December. Pictured, Mester wearing a rainbow coloured gold necklace allegedly stolen from Tamara Ecclestone

Burglars stole jewellery from Tamara Ecclestone, pictured with husband Jay Rutland

Burglars stole jewellery from Tamara Ecclestone, pictured with husband Jay Rutland

Burglars stole jewellery from Tamara Ecclestone, pictured with husband Jay Rutland

In a police interview Mester asked if a detective was out of his mind when told her son was captured on CCTV with the alleged burglars.

In the transcript read to the court, DC Glen Peach said: ‘They shake hands, 18 to 50 million pounds worth of jewellery was stolen.

‘They then go back to TLK apartments, they then move to (15) Furness Road, Fulham.

‘Can you tell me why you are on CCTV talking to the man who goes on to burgle £50m in jewellery and then later you’re on the same plane back to Italy?’

She answered ‘no comment’.

Asked why she was wearing £66,000 earrings stolen from Ms Ecclestone’s address she said ‘I don’t have them from London’. 

The heist at Ms Ecclestone's house (above) took place on 'Billionaire's Row' in Kensington

The heist at Ms Ecclestone's house (above) took place on 'Billionaire's Row' in Kensington

The heist at Ms Ecclestone’s house (above) took place on ‘Billionaire’s Row’ in Kensington

Mester and her son Emile-Bogdan Savastru, 30, were filmed on CCTV with the alleged raiders in the days before and after the Ecclestone raid at her £70million mansion near Hyde Park

Mester and her son Emile-Bogdan Savastru, 30, were filmed on CCTV with the alleged raiders in the days before and after the Ecclestone raid at her £70million mansion near Hyde Park

Mester and her son Emile-Bogdan Savastru, 30, were filmed on CCTV with the alleged raiders in the days before and after the Ecclestone raid at her £70million mansion near Hyde Park 

‘If I had stolen £50m, would I have come back to England?’ she added.

‘Yes, to facilitate with the selling of it,’ said DC Peach.

Mester said: ‘I know what you want, I have nothing to do with it, I know you want the big people, I have nothing to do with it.’

She added: ‘I have f*** all to do with it.’

She offered no comment to questions about buying luxury goods in Harrods between December 17 and 19, including £1,099 on Louis Vuitton items and £810 on Hermes.

Mester was shown CCTV images allegedly showing her being helped by one of the alleged burglars with her Oyster card at St Mary’s Cray station, near their rented apartment base in Orpington, Kent.

‘I do travel in London with the train,’ she said.

She then tried to grab the photos from another interviewing officer. She added: ‘It doesn’t mean they’re with me. Anything is possible.’ 

DC Peach said: ‘On the 13th of December a burglary happened, since then I think my team have had one day off, we have been collating evidence.’ 

Mester denies conspiracy to commit burglary and concealing criminal property

Mester denies conspiracy to commit burglary and concealing criminal property

Mester denies conspiracy to commit burglary and concealing criminal property

She concluded the interview by complimenting DC Peach on his blue eyes and asking for another cigarette.

Three days earlier the thieves had made off with jewellery worth Euro 600,000 and Euro 400,000 in cash, from the Knightsbridge home of late Leicester City chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha after smashing one of his safes with hammers, the court has heard.

The burglars had made off with £60,000 worth of valuables from the Chelsea home Frank Lampard shares with television presenter Christine Lampard on December 1.

Mester is said to have been ‘inseparable’ from the alleged burglars and Marcovici assisted by driving them to Mr Srivaddhanaprabha’s property.

Mester, of no fixed address, denies three counts of conspiracy to commit burglary and concealing criminal property.

Savastru, of Bethnal Green, denies two counts of conspiracy to burgle and attempting to remove criminal property.

Marcovici, of Romford, and Stan, of Harrow, deny conspiracy to burgle.

The trial continues.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Priti Patel vows to reform asylum law tackling deportation delays

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priti patel vows to reform asylum law tackling deportation delays

Priti Patel vowed to implement ‘fundamental reform’ of Britain’s asylum system yesterday amid mounting concern about the Channel migrants crisis. 

The Home Secretary pledged to shake up refugee laws to make it easier to expel migrants who do not have a legitimate right to stay in the UK.

Among her new commitments was a promise to tackle ‘litigious’ human rights claimants who seek to delay their deportation from Britain after their cases are refused.

Priti Patel vowed to implement ‘fundamental reform’ of Britain’s asylum system after mounting concern about the Channel migrants crisis

Priti Patel vowed to implement ‘fundamental reform’ of Britain’s asylum system after mounting concern about the Channel migrants crisis

Priti Patel vowed to implement ‘fundamental reform’ of Britain’s asylum system after mounting concern about the Channel migrants crisis

A wide-ranging package of measures due to be published early next year will also make it more difficult for foreign criminals to avoid deportation by lodging an asylum claim, the Mail has learned.

The law will be changed to force immigration judges to place more weight on the harm caused by serious criminals, making it more likely appeals will be rejected.

Miss Patel’s pledge for wide-ranging action came after her enemies anonymously claimed at the weekend that a failure to address the Channel crisis had left her vulnerable in a potential Cabinet reshuffle.

The Home Secretary told the Mail: ‘We need to bring in some fundamental change to our entire asylum policy in terms of some of the ways in which we deal with cases, but also the way in which people can come and claim asylum in our country.

Miss Patel insisted there was a huge amount of work being done to reduce the number of small migrant boats crossing from northern France

Miss Patel insisted there was a huge amount of work being done to reduce the number of small migrant boats crossing from northern France

Miss Patel insisted there was a huge amount of work being done to reduce the number of small migrant boats crossing from northern France

‘It’s right that we give refuge to people who’ve been persecuted. At the same time we have to deal with many of the other litigious cases that come forward… It’s all linked – the asylum system and illegal migration.’

Miss Patel insisted there was a huge amount of work being done to reduce the number of small migrant boats crossing from northern France. More than 8,500 migrants have crossed so far this year, up from 1,850 last year – but no deal has been reached with France.

It is understood a Bill, to be introduced early in the New Year, will force judges to place more weight on asylum seekers’ criminal records.

Currently, serious criminals including killers and rapists trump deportation orders in the courts by claiming their human rights will be infringed if they are sent back to their home countries.

In May the Mail revealed Miss Patel is also planning to tighten the appeals system for non-criminal claimants.

They will have to lodge all their arguments at the beginning of a case so they cannot make a series of legal claims to delay deportation.

Boris: There is no place for bullying 

Boris Johnson has warned ministers and top civil servants there is ‘no place for bullying’ in Government after a report found Home Secretary Priti Patel shouted and swore at staff.

The Prime Minister wrote to senior figures reminding them to remain ‘respectful’ – but said they should also be able to ‘speak freely and honestly’.

Boris Johnson has warned ministers and top civil servants there is ‘no place for bullying’ in Government

Boris Johnson has warned ministers and top civil servants there is ‘no place for bullying’ in Government

Boris Johnson has warned ministers and top civil servants there is ‘no place for bullying’ in Government

In the letter, signed jointly with Cabinet Secretary Simon Case, Mr Johnson said that ‘mutual trust and respect between politicians and their officials are paramount’.

Last week a report by civil service mandarin Sir Alex Allan found Miss Patel shouted and swore at officials in her department – ‘behaviour that can be described as bullying’.

Sir Alex said she breached the ministerial code – but Mr Johnson overruled his conclusion.

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