Baby dies of COVID-19 in USA as global cases top 900,000

 

A six-week-old baby has died from coronavirus, the youngest reported victim, as the number of people infected with the virus globally pushes towards one million.

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont confirmed the tragedy, saying the baby died late last week.

"It is with heartbreaking sadness today that we can confirm the first paediatric fatality in Connecticut linked to #COVID19," Mr Lamont said.

"A 6-week-old newborn from the Hartford area was brought unresponsive to a hospital late last week and could not be revived."

Mr Lamont said testing on Tuesday, local time, confirmed the baby had the virus.

It was not immediately clear if the newborn had any underlying health conditions.

"This is a virus that attacks our most fragile without mercy," he said.

"This also stresses the importance of staying home and limiting exposure to other people. Your life and the lives of others could literally depend on it. Our prayers are with the family at this difficult time."

Mr Lamont said he believed the baby was one of the youngest victims of the disease.

"Testing confirmed last night that the newborn was COVID-19 positive. This is absolutely heartbreaking," he said.

"We believe this is one of the youngest lives lost anywhere due to complications relating to COVID-19."

The World Health Organization yesterday warned coronavirus was not just a disease for the elderly after a 13-year-old boy was killed in England.

"We have reports of the deaths of children, one in China and one in America," said Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, from the WHO's emergency diseases unit.

It came as America's death toll continued to climb and hospitals reported they were overwhelmed.

US President Donald Trump last night warned America was facing "a hell of a bad two weeks" and there would be more than 2000 deaths a day within a fortnight.

The country needed to brace for a best-case scenario of at least 100,000 deaths, and up to 240,000, Mr Trump said.

Worldwide, more than 900,000 people have been infected and more than 45,000 have died, according to a tally kept by Johns Hopkins University, though the real figures are believed to be much higher because of testing shortages, differences in counting the dead and large numbers of mild cases that have gone unreported.

Wimbledon has been cancelled. Picture: Getty Images
Wimbledon has been cancelled. Picture: Getty Images

 

The UK Government has called in the Army reserves to fight the coronavirus, as Wimbledon was cancelled for the first time since World War II.

There were 563 coronavirus deaths in Britain on Thursday (Australian time) - the equivalent of a patient dying in the UK every two and a half minutes - with criticism about a lack of testing of frontline health workers, let alone the general population.

Britain's positive COVID-19 cases also rose with 29,474 people infected - up from 25,150 on Tuesday.

Britain's Department of Health confirmed the number of deaths in the UK have now risen to 2352 - a jump of 563 in 24 hours.

That is the biggest day-on-day increase for the second day running.

Germany has been testing 500,000 people a week, while the UK struggled to test 10,000 a day.

Now the government has called in 3000 army reserves to help its coronavirus fight after the military set up a 4000-bed Nightingale Hospital in East London, which was due to open this week.

Meanwhile, Wimbledon was cancelled for 2020 instead of being postponed.

Organisers were unable to move the fixture because they could not guarantee that courts would be able to stand up to two weeks of play during the cooler months.

"This is a decision that we have not taken lightly, and we have done so with the highest regard for public health and the wellbeing of all those who come together to make Wimbledon happen," Ian Hewitt, the All England Lawn Tennis Club Chairman, said.

"It has weighed heavily on our minds that the staging of The Championships has only been interrupted previously by World Wars but… we believe that it is a measure of this global crisis that it is ultimately the right decision to cancel this year's Championships."

Ticketholders will have the option of a refund or be offered the chance to purchase tickets for the same day and court for the tournament next year.

It marks the first time in 75 years that the grasscourt Grand Slam will not be held after World War II prevented organisers from holding the tournament between 1940-1945.

Wimbledon is just the latest major sporting event, including the Tokyo Olympics, Euro 2020 and The Masters, postponed or called off for this year.

UK Armed Forces Minister James Heappey said the 3000 reservists would be needed for six months.

"Our reservists are a truly remarkable group of people, each with their own skills and experience from their civilian careers beyond the armed forces," he said.

"I know that our reservists will answer the nation's call with real enthusiasm and will play a key part in our response to COVID-19."

Only 2000 of the National Health Services 1.2 million staff have been tested, as authorities assess the quality of millions of tests they have ordered from China.

 

 

Elderly members of the public wearing face masks walk down a street in Central London. Picture: Getty Images
Elderly members of the public wearing face masks walk down a street in Central London. Picture: Getty Images

 

 

 

National Health Service staff wait in their cars to take a coronavirus test at a drive through centre in north London. Picture: AP
National Health Service staff wait in their cars to take a coronavirus test at a drive through centre in north London. Picture: AP

TEEN VICTIM 'COULD'VE BEEN SAVED'

Ismail is the second teenager to die from coronavirus in London after an "extremely healthy" chef passed away on March 24.

Luca Di Nicola, originally from Italy but living in North London, is one of the UK's youngest COVID-19 victim with no underlying health conditions.

The teenager had visited his GP with coronavirus symptoms last week but was reportedly given paracetamol and told he had "nothing to worry about".

His condition reportedly deteriorated on 23 March and he was visited at home by his GP, who is said to have told him, "you're young, strong and you shouldn't worry about this bad influenza".

But his condition worsened and he was rushed to North Middlesex Hospital after his lips "turned purple" and he collapsed.

The teen passed away the next day.

A spokesman for the hospital said in a statement a 19-year-old man had "very sadly" died "soon after" arriving at A&E. He tested positive for COVID-19 after he died.

The deputy mayor of Nereto, Maria Angela Lelii, told the BBC there would be "a different conversation" had Mr Di Nicola returned to Italy for treatment.

*hem as saying he was given paracetamol by his GP when he first developed symptoms.*

His dad Mirko Di Nicolahas told La Repubblica newspaper he has since received a letter from North Middlesex Hospital confirming his son had tested positive for the killer virus.

Paying tribute, he added: "Luca has been tested positive for coronavirus.

"Rest in piece my little angel, keep on flying. You are in our souls."

 

REMOTE AUSSIE HEALTH WORKERS TEST POSITIVE

Five health workers have tested positive to coronavirus in the remote Kimberley Region.

The new cases have been detected in a community where half of all residents are indigenous.

Those diagnosed,The Australian reports, include an employee of the WA Country Health Service in Halls Creek, a service hub for remote Aboriginal communities.

Three of the other Kimberley health workers were in Broome and one was in Kununurra near the Northern Territory border.

Australia's death toll has risen to 21 and the number of cases is 4860 but authorities say the curve is "flattening".

The new comes as the US death toll soars to 4076, doubling within three days. Forty per cent of the fatalities were in New York State.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly says the curve is flattening but Australians must not be complacent.
Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly says the curve is flattening but Australians must not be complacent.

The number of cases in Spain has surpassed 100,000 while the number of fatalities reported has reached a new record, the country's health ministry says.

The number of cases rose to 102,136 on Wednesday up from 94,417 on Tuesday, the ministry said.

Overall fatalities caused by the disease rose to 9053 from 8189 on Tuesday. The daily death toll reached a record 864, though the increase was lower in percentage terms than during the previous days.

Despite the figures, Spain's Health Minister assured the nation the pandemic is "stabilising".

 

An employee of Great Asia food store sprays disinfectant as a preventive measure against coronavirus in Melbourne. Picture: AAP
An employee of Great Asia food store sprays disinfectant as a preventive measure against coronavirus in Melbourne. Picture: AAP

China's National Health Commission has reported 36 new COVID-19 cases, one day after announcing that asymptomatic cases will now be included in the official count.

The commission said there were 130 new asymptomatic cases reported over the previous 24 hours, and two were reported as confirmed cases.

So far there were 1367 asymptomatic cases under quarantine, said Mi Feng, spokesman of the commission.

The move to disclose the number of asymptomatic cases comes amid scrutiny of China's reported figures, which previously only included people who exhibited symptoms.

 

 

PARLIAMENT RECALLED FOR NEXT WEEK

Federal parliament will resume for a special sitting next Wednesday to consider the JobKeeper legislation so cash can start flowing to businesses as soon as possible.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has spoken to Labor leader Anthony Albanese about the matter with the final details yet to be decided.

More than 452,236 businesses applied to access the wage subsidy in the first three days since it was announced.

The subsidy is expected to hit businesses on May 1, but will be backdated to March 30 meaning employers can pay workers $1,500 a fortnight now and get reimbursed once the measure kicks in.

 

 

It comes as one of the nation's top health chiefs has revealed Australia's coronavirus curve is "flattening" but that it was vital that people still continue following social distancing guidelines.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly advised all Australians to get their seasonal flu shots as quickly as possible.

He warned "it is not time to take the foot off the brake" when it comes to strict social isolation measures.

 

"We haven't had a large increase in the last 24 hours although the numbers continue to increase," Dr Kelly said. "We are continuing to get more cases but the curve is flattening and rather than thinking about a peak we should be thinking about a long haul. That's really the most important thing.

 

"This is very good news but it is not time to take the foot off the brake. We need to continue those measures, possibly for some months."

Dr Kelly said he did not think Australia could eliminate the COVID-19 virus without a vaccine, but cautioned it could take between 12 to 18 months.

 

RETIRED DOCTORS CALLED IN

 

Up to 40,0000 retired doctors, nurses, midwives and pharmacists are being urged to return to work to boost the fight against the coronavirus.

From Monday, Australian health authorities will re-register qualified medics who have left work in the past three years under a "pandemic response sub-register".

 

Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency CEO Martin Fletcher said the potential addition of thousands of practitioners would and relieve the pressure on those already working.

"Even if we get only 5 per cent or 10 per cent of practitioners wanting to stay on the sub-register, we're talking about somewhere between 2,000 to 4,000 additional practitioners available to the health system," he told the ABC.

"I think every bit is going to help."

Originally published as Wimbledon cancelled as UK deaths spike

A paramedic is seen in the back of an ambulance outside St Thomas’ hospital in London. COVID-19 deaths in the UK continue to soar. Picture: Getty Images
A paramedic is seen in the back of an ambulance outside St Thomas’ hospital in London. COVID-19 deaths in the UK continue to soar. Picture: Getty Images
A jogger runs along the deserted footpaths around Buckingham Palace. Picture: Getty Images
A jogger runs along the deserted footpaths around Buckingham Palace. Picture: Getty Images

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