– Officials advised to conduct COVID-19 test on remains of 6-year-old girl
The regional health authorities in Region Ten held an emergency meeting yesterday to address several issues including their contingency plan to tackle the rapidly growing COVID -19 situation.
Mayor of Linden, Waneka Arrindell, Regional Democratic Council (RDC) officials, regional health workers and a team from the Ministry of Public Health, inclusive of Deputy Chief Medical Officer (DCMO) Dr Karen Boyle, Epidemiologist Dr Luella Sucre, Emergency Medicine Specialist Dr Tracey Bovell, and Mrs. Bonita Lowenfield Mc Donald, were among those in attendance of the meeting.
According to the release from the Region Ten RDC, during the meeting, it was confirmed by the health officials that a patient who was transferred to Georgetown recently for a higher level of care, had tested positive for COVID -19.
The RDC, in the statement, noted that the patient has since been identified as a 49-year- old visually impaired man.
The man reportedly accommodated overseas guests at his home recently.
It is suspected that the patient may have contracted the virus from his overseas guests, since he had not left his home prior to falling ill.
Further, the RDC said that a case involving a six year-old child, who died recently after she was rushed to the Emergency Room, (ER) at the Linden Hospital Complex was discussed.
Acting Medical Superintendent of the Linden Hospital Complex, Dr. Joseph London explained that the girl was taken to the hospital for mild fever, trouble breathing and tummy pains.
During the visit, Dr London revealed that the pediatric team immediately conducted some X-rays and other tests on the child.
It was subsequently recommended that the child be transferred to Georgetown for a higher level of care.
However, Dr London disclosed that the child “died within 90 minutes of arrangements being made.”
“While we were waiting to transfer her, she was not maintaining oxygen over 70.This made her unstable for transfer. She was resuscitated to comfortable level and her condition continued to worsen. Her condition was suspicious; however, we were unable to conduct a test on her,” Dr. London told the meeting.
He added that, “by the time, the medical staff was ready to have her transported to Georgetown, she died.”
Further, Dr London informed the meeting that the man who was transferred to Georgetown has worsened He noted that this will result in several persons who would have interacted with him being quarantined.
He stressed that he is happy that several of the medical staff that dealt with the patient had on their protective PPE gear, while following standard operating procedures.
“We are cognizant of the impact and extent of this virus, thus anyone coming into the hospital will see that our medical personnel are prepared and ready for any in eventuality as we are not taking anything for granted.”
“Our nurses are expected to wear their masks and be properly prepared,” he declared.
“It was further revealed that the visiting four-member delegation along with staff from the hospital are expected to reach out to the dead girl’s family to have a full investigation done with the view of evaluating and examining them properly,” Dr London was quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, it was pointed out by the DCMO that it’s important that a test be conducted to ascertain if indeed the child had COVID 19 or not.
She however warned that “because the body was taken to the morgue before being tested, there is a possibility that after the samples could produce negative result.”
“It doesn’t mean that the girl wasn’t positive in having COVID-19.”
“It was important for the medical staff to have tested her within 24 hours …” the RDC quoted the DCMO as saying.
She continued, “I would like to urge the medical team to conduct a test and even if it comes back negative…”
“With one confirmed case and a possible case within a day of each other, it is important that the residents of Region Ten and health authorities here enact their plan immediately as it is evident that COVID has already entered.” she added.
Dr Boyle warned the health officials in Region Ten that with COVID-19 already in their region, she wants to see a continued proactive and aggressive approach. She congratulated them on their preparedness, while reminding them that the fight must be a collective one with one voice.
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