In an unfortunate incident, an eight-month-old baby who reportedly travelled around 400 km from Arunachal Pradesh to Meghalaya via Assam for treatment died withing hours of testing positive for coronavirus.
The incident that highlights the dearth of facilities in North-Eastern part of the country took place on Monday, July 6, when the baby's parents had to cover the distance all the way to Shillong by road.
According to officials, the baby was referred to the North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS) in Meghalaya's Shillong from Arunachal Pradesh's Tomo Riba Institute of Health and Medical Sciences for treatment.
"On their arrival, the swab samples of the baby were collected and sent for tests. The baby boy tested positive for COVID-19 and later died in the evening," said Meghalaya Health Minister AL Hek, reported NDTV.
"The swab samples of the parents of the infant and the driver tested negative for COVID19," he added.
It is significant to note that the baby had contracted the respiratory disease although the parents tested negative. Notably, the lack of timely availability of medical treatment can be one of the reasons for the baby's death.
The health minister also informed that the situation in Meghalaya has taken on a grim turn.
"Yesterday, we had the largest single-day spike of 16 cases. Today also, as many as 6 cases have been detected in the state thus, things have taken a rather alarming turn here," he said, reported NorthEast Now
According to the officials, the baby is the second COVID-19 patient to die in Meghalaya. The first death in the state was recorded on April 15.