[UPDATE, April 1, 2020, 8:40 p.m.] According to Oriental Mindoro Governor Bonz Dolor, the 21-month-old baby girl is scheduled to be discharged from the hospital Thursday or early Friday, reports Manila Bulletin.
The baby, affectionately called "Baby COVID-19" by the staff, has been taken off her dependence for intravenous (IV) fluids and has been given oral medication. "The child is playful, has good appetite, and for almost a week, had had no fever," Dolor said, quoting the girl's physician.
"We fervently hope that the re-test will be negative," he adds.
Original story follows
A 1-year-old baby tested positive for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Oriental Mindoro and is the first case in the province, said Governor Humerlito “Bonz” Dolor on Friday, March 27, 2020. She is also the youngest confirmed COVID-19 case in the country so far.
In a Facebook post, Dolor shared that the child, who is 21 months old, has a history of travel to Alabang from March 5 to March 12, 2020. “Dahil siya ay napakabata pa at upang siguraduhin pang lalo, humiling ako sa DOH (Department of Health) na muling ipasuri (confirmatory test) ang kanyang specimen at ito naman ay kagyat na pinagbigyan,” he said.
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The child’s guardians have also been tested for the virus and they are under strict quarantine, according to Dolor. He also confirmed that contact tracing is being carried out by the provincial and city health offices.
In an interview with DZMM Teleradyo, Dolor told reporter Tony Velasquez that the child took a trip to Alabang with her grandparents and cousin on March 5 to visit her mom who works in an establishment the area. After seven days, the child came down with a fever and was brought to a hospital in Alabang for a checkup. She was discharged because there were no major findings and her grandparents took her back to Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro on March 12 before the enhanced community quarantine took place.
On March 22, the child experienced high fever and her grandparents took her to a hospital in the province. She underwent a swab test and the specimen was sent to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM). Dolor said that they got the test results back today.
Dolor said that doctors are working hard to save the baby, who is also suspected to have dengue.
"Meron din siyang possible finding na dengue case kaya nag-request ako kay DOH na bagaman may confirmed test na ito, I requested na ipapa-swab ko ulit at ipadadala ulit namin ngayong araw ang specimen for RITM to confirm dahil napakabata niya," Dolor said. "At the same time 'yung nanay na nakasama niya sa Maynila walang symptoms after almost a month, 'yung lolo at lola niya rin."
He adds, "Nakiusap na ako sa mga pediatricians namin na pagtulung-tulungang tingnan ang sitwasyon ng batang ito. Kasi hindi lang pneumonia ang nakitang problema sa bata. Mataas ang lagnat kaya may suspetsang may dengue ang bata."
According to ABS-CBN reporter Dennis Datu, Dolor said that the child’s mom is still in Manila and they are currently searching for her. However, she, along with the child’s grandparents, do not exhibit any symptoms.
Previously, the youngest COVID-19 case was a 13-year-old patient from Quezon City who has already recovered.
The risk of children dying due to COVID-19 is very low but click here for the ways you can protect your family against the disease. For more stories on COVID-19, click here.
This article was updated on April 1, 2020 at 8:40 p.m.