Newborn found with COVID-19 at Royal Children’s Hospital

28 July 2020

Written by: Madisson Ball

An outbreak has been linked to the neonatal ICU, with authorities concerned it'll get worse.

A baby under three weeks old has now tested positive to COVID-19, raising concerns as four cases have been identified in relation to the Royal Children’s Hospital.

The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is at the centre of the cluster.

The Department of Health and Human services (DHHS) says that two parents, one patient and a healthcare worker have tested positive to the virus.

“All babies, staff and parents, including any RCH staff who have spent more than two hours on Butterfly Ward since 12 July will be tested,” the department said.

A spokesperson from the Royal Children’s Hospital has told the ABC there were 17 staff, seven patients and three parents determined as close contacts to the four positive cases, who are now in self quarantine.

Victoria recorded 532 COVID-19 cases on Monday, being the highest daily increase. Of these cases, 154 are linked to known outbreaks and 378 are under investigation.

More than 575 Australian children aged under nine years old have contracted the virus.

Paediatrician and Chief of Medicine at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Associate Professor Tom Connell, spoke to 3AW’s Neil Mitchell about the outbreak and how it can affect children.

“It’s not just an adult disease. The most important thing is to be alert, use your instincts when your child is not quite right.” he said.

COVID-19 symptoms to keep an eye out for include sneezing, fast breathing, fever and changes in behaviour or mood.

The Premier says that if Victorians don’t follow the rules, the toll will rise and restrictions will tighten.

“Unless we see a change, then we’re going to continue to see these numbers at unacceptably high levels. So, please, do something that we will all be so grateful for – act on your symptoms,” Andrews said.



Photo: Photo of the front of The Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne by Whatmov available HERE  This photo is available under a Creative Commons Attribution. This image has not been modified

Edited after publication: “575 Victorian children” changed to “575 Australian children”.