Sunday, January 19

Hassan: Cause of babies’ death not ascertained yet

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KUALA LUMPUR: The cause of death of two babies at a daycare centre in Taman Permata here on Thursday has not been ascertained yet, Health director-general Datuk Seri Dr Hasan Abdul Rahman said.

He said the ministry was unable to confirm at the moment whether bacterial infection, as reported by the media, was the cause of death while the possibility of milk aspiration could not be ruled out yet.

In the meantime, the premises had been shut down and sprayed with disinfectant as a precautionary measure, Dr Hasan said in a statement.

He said 21 autopsy samples had been taken on each case and that up to 10am today, eight results had been obtained which did not show any traces of paracetamol, salicylate or benzodiazepine.

Tests also showed negative results for H1N1, adenovirus, respiratory syncytial virus and dengue, he said.

The laboratory report for bacterial infection and the results of other tests are expected to be obtained between three days and two weeks.

He said the first case involved a four-month-old baby which had fever symptoms, cough and flu two weeks prior to the incident.

The baby had been brought to a private clinic four times and was given antibiotic and symptomatic treatment, he said.

“The baby’s mother said that her baby’s condition was improving except for a minor cough. However, on Thursday, the baby collapsed at the daycare centre at 2pm and was brought to a private clinic for treatment but was pronounced dead at 2.50pm,” he said.

On the second case involving a seven-month-old baby, he said, the baby’s mother said that a day before the incident, her child had flu but did not undergo any treatment.

“On the same day, within minutes from the first case, the baby collapsed and was brought to the same hospital and pronounced dead at 3pm,” he said, adding that post-mortem examinations had been carried out on the two cases on the night itself.

A team of health officers was sent to carry out checks on other children, he said, adding that six children aged between one and three years were found to have history of respiratory tract infection but had since recovered.

“Only one baby is still showing flu symptoms but no fever.

Twenty-six children aged between four and six years are healthy,” he said.

He called on parents to take care of their unwell children on their own and not sending them to daycare centres. — Bernama