The first baby for 2004 has brought joy to a social worker from a Sars-ravaged hospital A worker from a Sars-ravaged hospital who gave birth to Hong Kong's first baby for 2004 hopes that her little girl brings health and happiness to the city. The as-yet unnamed baby, weighing 2.89kg, arrived three minutes after the stroke of midnight at Prince of Wales Hospital in Sha Tin yesterday. New mother Shum Kin-ling, 31, said her daughter arrived 10 days earlier than doctors had expected. Ms Shum is a medical social worker at Prince of Wales Hospital - the first hospital stuck by Sars infections and where more than 80 medical workers and students came down with the killer disease last spring. Ms Shum's husband, Cheng Wai-kei, 31, is also a medical social worker but at another public hospital. Their first baby was delivered by caesarean section and was receiving special care yesterday due to her slightly early arrival. 'I was so nervous and in so much pain in the ward that I did not remember it was New Year's Eve,' Ms Shum said. 'I just wanted to deliver the baby as soon as possible at the time. I was so happy when she arrived safe and healthy. 'We do not have any specific expectation from our daughter. We would be very pleased if she can stay healthy and happy for her whole life. We also hope that she will bring new hope, health and happiness to all people in Hong Kong. 'More importantly, we hope that Sars will never return. The disease brought too big a loss to the city and it caused global fear and chaos,' the new mother said. Hong Kong's second and third babies for 2004 were also girls, born at 12.11am and 12.40am in Kwong Wah Hospital and Tuen Mun Hospital respectively. Mr Cheng said his wife did not learn she was pregnant until May - shortly after the Sars outbreak's peak, when hospitals became better equipped with preventive measures. 'Otherwise, both of us would have been under even more pressure with fears that my wife would be infected,' he said. The anti-Sars treatment for pregnant women has been found to cause a high risk of fetal abnormalities. Ms Shum said she insisted on going to work as usual during the outbreak, like all other frontline workers in hospitals. 'Life should go on, and everyone should maintain their duty despite the fears of infection.' But Ms Shum said she was cautious at work during the outbreak, wearing surgical masks to protect both herself and her unborn child from infection. The hospital also arranged for her to take on duties with a lower risk of infection and less contact with patients. The new parents said they would consider a name for the girl with a special meaning to commemorate the major incidents which happened in the city last year.