• The 11-month-old girl developed a fever and suffered seizures
  • She was intubated and admitted to a pediatric intensive care unit following a COVID-19 diagnosis
  • The baby was one of the 13 people who died of COVID-19 Sunday

An 11-month-old baby in Hong Kong has died of COVID-19 complications as the country continues to battle an overwhelming surge of new infections.

The baby girl, whose identity was not made public, tested positive for COVID-19 in a rapid test. She developed a fever and suffered seizures on Feb. 19, prompting her family, who were also positive for COVID-19, to bring her to the emergency department of the Tseung Kwan O Hospital.

Doctors at the hospital intubated the baby and transferred her to the pediatric intensive care unit at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Her condition worsened and she suffered a cardiac arrest around Saturday noon. She was resuscitated but eventually died Sunday evening.

The 11-month-old baby girl is currently the youngest person to have died of COVID-19 in the city. She was also one of the 13 people who died of the novel coronavirus over the past day, according to The Standard.

As of Sunday, Hong Kong recorded a total of 52,830 COVID-19 infections and 305 deaths. Cases reported since late December accounted for over 70% of all cases recorded over the last two years.

Many are urging private hospitals to charge less for COVID-19 testing, which costs more than HK$2000 (US$250). Tim Pang Hung-Cheong, the spokesman for the Patients’ Rights Association, is also urging the government to give allowances for the country’s residents to get tested for COVID-19 at private hospitals.

“I can understand that running a private hospital is kind of a business. Maybe the government can subsidize the general public for some service there or the private hospitals can forgo some fees as a way of assuming social responsibility during this difficult time,” he told the South China Morning Post.

As a response to the overwhelming number of COVID-19 cases in hospitals across the city, the government has announced plans to hire construction crews from mainland China to build isolation units equipped with 10,000 beds to meet the rising demand.

Mainland Chinese crews are known for being able to build facilities in a short time. In early 2020, they were able to build two facilities with a total of 2,500 beds amid the outbreak of coronavirus cases in Wuhan.

The government would also use hotel rooms, sports facilities and select public housing units as temporary COVID-19 wards.

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Representation. A baby. Pixabay