8-month-old baby succumbs to COVID-19

The parents didn't believe the virus exists!

It all happened so fast. Dr. Cherie Tecson-delos Santos, a pediatric neurologist who's working in a hospital within the National Capital Region, was called in on August 9 1:27 a.m. to take on a case. The baby, who was brought to the hospital with his parents around midnight, was having seizures.

By 7:00 a.m., the attending pediatrician informed her that they were performing CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation). By 10:48 a.m, the baby had passed away. The probable cause is hypoxia which means that the brain was deprived of oxygen for a significant amount of time. "The pneumonia was very severe. He was intubated after a few minutes in the emergency room," Dr. delos Santos tells Manila Bulletin Lifestyle. "Severe pneumonia is when the oxygen can't be delivered effectively to the brain, causing seizures. We call it hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy," explains Dr. delos Santos.

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With a heavy heart, Dr. delos Santos posted on her personal Facebook account what happened as a reminder to the public that COVID-19 is out there and it's real. "This morning, I lost an 8-month-old baby to COVID-19. He was a previously well infant who presented with six days of cough and fever before coming to the emergency room with recurrent seizures. He went into cardiac arrest six hours after the referral and died shortly thereafter."

She further shares more information about the family, "The father is a transport service driver who staunchly believed that COVID-19 wasn’t real. He refused vaccination and accused the emergency room doctors of fabricating the COVID-19 test result, just so the hospital would have an 'excuse' for his son’s death."

To add to this, "The father denied having symptoms, all while struggling to contain his cough. His wife was likewise positive. While it is a tragedy to lose such a young life to a disease that is now mostly preventable, the equally devastating aspect of this tale is that they have two more kids at home, both unwilling victims of their parents’ decisions, both unable to make choices to protect their own lives."

Dr. delos Santos stresses again the importance of keeping children safe. "It is a joint responsibility of the family and the community—not one of them will be safe if not all of us will be protected. So, please, if you don’t want to do it for yourself, get vaccinated: for the children who are counting on us to keep them alive until this pandemic is over."