DOH: Youngest coronavirus patient in PH is 9-day-old baby

Bonz Magsambol
DOH: Youngest coronavirus patient in PH is 9-day-old baby
(UPDATED) The Department of Health says that as of April 30, a total of 25 infants had contracted the coronavirus disease in the Philippines, 2 of whom died

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Department of Health (DOH) said that as of Thursday, April 30, the youngest coronavirus patient in the country is a 9-day-old baby in Cebu.

“We’re verifying the accuracy of the data we have been receiving, but this is the youngest, according to our epidemiology bureau,” DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a mix of English and Filipino during a virtual press briefing. 

On April 21, DOH Central Visayas reported that a newborn from Cebu tested positive for the virus. The baby’s mother, however, tested negative for the disease.

A total of 25 infants had contracted the virus as of Thursday, two of whom died, the DOH said.* 

Vergeire said that there was still no evidence that pregnant women can infect their babies “vertically.”

“Most of these cases, apparently ay paglabas ng bata ay baka doon nakuha [‘yung virus]. ‘Yung mga bata paglabas may pulmunya, so noong tinest, positive siya,” said Vergeire.

(In most of these cases, apparently the baby contracted the virus when they were born. The infants were diagnosed with pneumonia, and tested positive for the virus.)

Among the infants who contracted the virus is 16-day-old Kobe, who recently recovered after 11 days of confinement at the National Children’s Hospital in Quezon City. He was discharged on Tuesday, April 28. (READ: Here’s how you can help baby Kobe, newborn coronavirus survivor)

As of Wednesday, the Philippines recorded 8,212 cases of coronavirus, including 588 deaths and 1,023 recoveries. – Rappler.com

*Editor’s note: The DOH originally said 26 infants had been infected, 6 of whom died. In a message to reporters, the agency corrected the numbers: 25 infected, two of who died.    

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Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol is a multimedia reporter for Rappler, covering health, education, and social welfare. He first joined Rappler as a social media producer in 2016.