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South African Newborn Succumbs to COVID-19

A two-day-old baby has died with coronavirus in South Africa – one of the world’s youngest victims of the virus. The mother had tested positive for Covid-19 and the child subsequently tested positive, the health minister said. “Sadly we have recorded the first neonatal mortality related to Covid-19. The baby was two days old and was born prematurely,” South Africa’s Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said. “The baby had lung difficulties which required ventilation support immediately after birth. We extend a special word of comfort to the mother of this child and salute the neonatologists, nurses and all allied and technical personnel who had the difficult task of caring for the neonate to the end,” he added. Asked by the BBC whether this was the youngest victim of coronavirus in Africa, the director of the Africa Centre for Disease Control (CDC) Dr John Nkengasong said: “To the best of our knowledge that is the first case that the Africa CDC is aware of.” The country’s death toll now stands at 339, and the number of confirmed cases has climbed to 18,003. The latest modelling predicts that up to 40,000 people might die in South Africa over the next few months .