TCI News

Critically Ill Infant Suspected of COVID-19 Passes Away in Turks & Caicos

Cheshire Hall Medical Centre, file photo

#Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – Friday, 3 April, 2020: The Turks and Caicos Islands Hospital is saddened to advise that an infant passed away shortly after admission to Cheshire Hall Medical Centre. 

The infant was transported to the facility via private vehicle on 2nd April 2020. She was admitted to the inpatient unit around midnight in critical condition. Although COVID-19 infection is statistically rare in this age group, given the presence of the pandemic and out of an abundance of caution, she was classified as a suspected case and met the latest case definition of COVID-19. There were other medical findings, which also could have potentially accounted for the infant’s passing.

The public health team was notified and a sample was taken as a differential for posthumous overseas testing. Due to patient confidentiality no further details can be released. 

The Turks and Caicos Islands Government – Ministry of Health Team commenced immediate contact tracing and persons identified in the process are required to undergo quarantine and/or screening as a precautionary measure. The Department of Social Development has also been engaged as per protocol. TCI Hospital and the Ministry of Health wishes to offer our most heartfelt condolences to the grieving parents. Further support and guidance have also been provided.  

A travel history is no longer needed to meet the criteria for COVID-19 given the closure of national borders. A suspected case is someone who meets any of the following revised case definitions: 

(a) A patient who presents with acute respiratory illness (fever and at least one sign/symptom of respiratory disease (e.g., cough, shortness of breath), and with no other etiology that fully explains the clinical presentation. 

(b) A patient who presents with any acute respiratory illness and having been in contact with a confirmed or probable COVID-19 case in the last 14 days prior to onset of symptoms. 

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(c) A patient who presents with severe acute respiratory infection – fever and at least one sign/symptom of respiratory disease (e.g., cough, shortness breath) and requiring hospitalization and with no other etiology that fully explains the clinical presentation.​​​

​A probable case is a suspect case for whom testing for COVID-19 is inconclusive. ​​A confirmed case is a person with laboratory confirmation of COVID-19 contagion, irrespective of clinical signs and symptoms.

The Ministry of Health is working closely with the TCI Hospital in regard to the matter.

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