MADERA, Calif. (KSEE) – COVID-19 has taken the life of a teenager at Valley Children’s Hospital, the first reported case of someone under the age of 18 dying due to coronavirus in California.
KSEE24 News was made aware of the news during the Fresno County COVID-19 presser.
“I’m speechless when it comes to anything that I could say to the family. It’s a heartbreaking case, and it just brings home the reality that this is not sparing even the youngest members of our community,” said Interim Health Officer Dr. Rais Vohra in tears.
The California Department of Public Health announced the death on Friday in a press release, saying the person was a teenager and had underlying health conditions. Valley Children’s confirmed the patient was one of theirs.
Valley Children’s statement reads:
“Valley Children’s Hospital confirms that a pediatric patient died from COVID-19 complications earlier this week. We will not be providing further details on the patient’s gender, ethnicity, age or circumstances surrounding the death, due to federal and state privacy laws.
Every day, our extraordinary team of doctors and nurses fights alongside some of the most critically ill children in the country with every means possible to enable the future every child deserves. Sometimes, we cannot overcome the overwhelming weight of the challenges some of them face, and that is distressing beyond measure. We understand how all our best efforts cannot ease the grief of our families, something we wish so
deeply we could lift
The death of this patient reaffirms that children—and no age group—are not immune from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is imperative, now more than ever, for us to all work together to prevent further spread of this disease.
Our children deserve no less.”
Just last week, Valley Children doctors were urging people to take the virus seriously, saying they were seeing cases of children getting severely sick from COVID-19.
The hospital nor the state are revealing more details on the case due to privacy laws.