The US has recorded the first-ever infant death from COVID-19 after the disease claimed the life of a child younger than a year old in Illinois.
Ngozi Ezike, the director of the state’s public health department, who announced the development on Saturday, said the baby died in Chicago.
“There has never before been a death associated with COVID-19 in an infant. A full investigation is underway to determine the cause of death,” the director said in a statement.
“We must do everything we can to prevent the spread of this deadly virus. If not to protect ourselves, but to protect those around us.”
Statistics from health authorities globally have repeatedly shown that older adults, not infants, are at higher risk of severe complications and death from COVID-19.
More than 85 percent of COVID-19 deaths in Illinois have as well been among individuals who are 60 years of age and older — although people of all ages have suffered severe illness from it.
China previously reported the death of a 10-month-old with Covid-19 four weeks after the infant was hospitalised.
However, it was later found that the child had earlier suffered bowel blockage and organ failure which partly prompted its falling ill.
While the number of individuals infected globally has exceeded 650,000 with the death toll nearing 31,000, over 2,000 have died so far from the disease in the US alone.