A Ukrainian couple who travelled to Australia during a round-the-world cycling trip have been stuck in Sydney after the arrival of their son 12 weeks early.

Volodymyr Muliar and Yaryna Kvitka planned to welcome their first child at the end of June in Argentina after cycling from Europe to Australia, reports The Daily Mail.

But Ms Kvitka went in to premature labour at just 28 weeks welcoming baby boy, Marko.

marko 1

Measuring just 11cm at birth, Marko remains in Sydney’s Royal Hospital for Women under the watch of specialists in the intensive care unit.

His parents, whose travel and health insurance did not extend to cover the cost of such extensive care, have been left with bills of up to $5,000-a-day.

While it will become cheaper, at the end of 10 weeks, the recommended length of his treatment, they will be saddled with a bill of more than $230,000.

‘This is an exciting and emotional event for every parent, yet our first meeting with our son has happened way too early. Our tiny boy will have to spend about 10 weeks at the Newborn Care Centre of The Royal Hospital for Women under close supervision and artificial life support.

‘Unfortunately, it happened so that our insurance does not cover labour and all related costs in Australia.’

‘We wish we could just swipe a card and pay for all the medical services our tiny son requires so badly but there is no chance in the world we could possibly do it on our own.

“We desperately call for your help. Any support will be tremendously appreciated; any amount you could donate will be accepted with deep gratitude.”

The couple have raised over $26,000 so far.


What a terrible situation to be put in. We wish them all the best.

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Image via gofundme

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  • my heart goes out to them, I hope they can get the help.


  • Hope the little boy improves – he’s lucky to be able to receive the help he needs. I feel for the parents with the expense though.


  • The article says the baby measured 11 cm at birth. Think this must be wrong. Look at the size of her hand compare to the length of the body of the baby…the baby is longer. It should probably be something more like 31 cm.


  • This must be very hard for this couple, hope they can raise the funding and their baby stays stable and grows strong.


  • I wish this new family all the very best.


  • I really do feel for them but, knowing she was pregnant, why did they do the cycling trip without making sure they were covered if this occurred. Saying that, I wish them all the best with their new baby.


  • totally unexpected
    but first thoughts
    shouldn’t have been cycling around the world this far into pregnancy


  • Ooh, this is such a terrible and tricky situation. Whilst pregnant, travel is often something that is discussed with your Doctor/OB and whilst this was an unlikely scenario, extra precautions should have been taken. Whilst this is not helpful to them now, I wish them well in getting home.


  • Imagine in America the price would be exorbitant, and other countries would lack our excellent care.
    I can’t imagine they can be made to pay if they have no funds, would it prevent them leaving the country. I have heard of tourists who have incurred speeding fines etc and they just leave without paying.


  • i agree, what were they thinking doing such a thing especially while pregnant. However no1 deserves to go through this. that poor couple and baby boy in another country without family support there for them. It really is terrible. Hoping for a speedy recovery/visit and that they are flying back home in no time :)


  • Cannot understand why they continued their round the world cycling when she knew she was pregnant. Many other countries they would have to travel through wouldn’t have our world class state-of-the-art hospitals to care for such a premature baby. I would have stayed home in her circumstance.


  • definitely a terrible situation to be in. Hope they manage to sort things out one way or another.


  • What on earth were they thinking…..lucky for them they are in Australia and not America, otherwise they would be looking at a bill 5 times that amount


  • wishing them every hope xx


  • Oh goodness….isnt it such a shame that we cant offer care for anyone that happens to be here. I know its complicated and that there is a lot more too it then simply giving medical help.
    Hopefully he will get stronger and be able to leave hospital sooner then the Doctors think.


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