Lebanon witnesses first death of a baby from coronavirus

The 25-day-old baby suffered from a heart defect

epa08284158 People wear face masks as they walk in front of the entrance of the Rafik Hariri University Hospital in Beirut, Lebanon, 10 March 2020. Lebanese Rafic Hariri University Hospital confirmed on 10 March its first death from coronavirus, the Health Ministry confirmed that the patient was a 56-year-old Lebanese citizen who traveled via airplane from Egypt to Lebanon on 20 February 2020. Lebanon on 10 March saw the largest one-day increase since the first case of coronavirus in Lebanon was announced on 21 February, with eleven new cases confirmed. Lebanon has now confirmed a total of 52 cases, with four in a critical state in the Rafik Hariri University Hospital.  EPA/WAEL HAMZEH
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Lebanon has registered its first death of a baby from Covid-19.

The baby girl was admitted to Beirut’s Rafic Hariri Hospital only 25 days after her birth, the hospital said on Wednesday. Once at the hospital a congenital heart condition and a case of coronavirus were confirmed.

Al Rassoul Al Azam hospital sent specialist open heart surgery team to operate on the child at Rafic Hariri Hospital “in the coronavirus emergency room under strict precautionary measures to avoid the transmission of the virus to staff,” a statement from Rafic Hariri Hospital read.

But the girl suffered from “acute inflammations” adding to the effect of coronavirus on her lungs, weakening her immune system, the statement added.

Al Rassoul Al Azam is one of two hospitals managed by Lebanese party Hezbollah in Beirut.

“Feeling sad. May her soul Rest in Peace. Our thoughts are with her family” tweeted the director of Rafic Hariri Hospital, Firass Abiad, on Wednesday.

With 33 deaths and 1622 cases since the pandemic was first detected in Lebanon in late February, the small Mediterranean country has escaped the swell in cases of some of its neighbours, but has seen  a spike in cases over the last few days.

On Wednesday morning, local media reported that 19 new cases of Covid-19 had been detected, including seven among people repatriated back to Lebanon.

Syrian authorities announced that 12 Syrian students living in Lebanon who had returned to Syria to take exams had also tested positive for Covid-19.