Newborn Mexican triplets have tested positive for coronavirus on the day they were born, despite apparently not coming into contact with anyone who has coronavirus other than their mother, sparking concerns that COVID-19 can be passed on by pregnant mothers.
Local health authorities said that the triplets were born May 8 to a mother who had coronavirus but did not exhibit any symptoms, according to media reports.
Monica Rangel, the health secretary for the northern Mexican state of San Luis Potosi, said that she did not think the triplets were in danger, and that the cases were being studied to see whether the children were infected before or after birth, according to the New York Times.
If accurate, the triplets would be one of the few reported cases of children being born with coronavirus.
Only a few studies have been done on whether pregnant mothers can transmit COVID-19 to their children, and more research is needed.
Should mothers touch their baby if they are infected with COVID-19?
The World Health Organization has advised that mothers should keep in close contact with babies and continue to breastfeed.
It advises mothers to:
• Breastfeed safely, with good respiratory hygiene;
• Hold the newborn skin-to-skin, and
• Share a room with the baby
Wash hands before and after touching the baby, and keep all surfaces clean.
#Breastfeeding helps protect infants from infectious diseases.— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) March 16, 2020
Infants born to mothers with suspected or confirmed #COVID19 should be fed according to standard infant feeding guidelines, while applying necessary precautions for infection prevention & control#coronavirus pic.twitter.com/F19NL5646u
However, the WHO noted that “transmission after birth via contact with infectious respiratory secretions is a concern.”
On the whole, children have made up a small minority of cases of coronavirus globally, the majority of which have been mild and shown no symptoms.
If you are pregnant, you can help protect yourself against #COVID19 by:— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) March 21, 2020
✔️ Washing your hands frequently
✔️ Keeping space between yourself and others
✔️ Avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth
✔️ Practicing respiratory hygienehttps://t.co/2nFW7S5fIB pic.twitter.com/akQUIP9MaR