Belize has registered two more deaths related to COVID-19 at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. The 14th death was a female from San Pedro Town who was airlifted to Belize City at the end of August and was hospitalized for a week with respiratory issues. The 15th death was a male from rural Belize who was asymptomatic but suffered from fatigue and loss of appetite. He died after reaching the hospital and tested positive for COVD-19 posthumously. In today’s session of Ask the Experts, the Director of Health Services, Marvin Manzanero mostly lamented on the asymptomatic patient and gave us more details on the circumstances surrounding his death.
Dr.Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services: “Person didn’t seem to have or wasn’t reported that they had any respiratory symptom. The primary reason why he was taken to the hospital was general weakness, general malaise, fatigue with loss of appetite. He died shortly after arriving at Karl Heusner. The protocol is that we would have tested him with a Gene Expert sample which is what we used for cases that are highly suspect and are in the containment area or the transition area at Karl Heusner to determine quickly if they are a potential COVID-19 case. The initial Gene Expert test had been negative but protocol again calls that once it’s negative we do a PCR test on that person and that result has come back positive for SARS COV 2 and so while in the death certificate it’s not going to list COVID-19 as a primary cause of death we do call that as an associated so it is placed somewhere in the death certificate.”
The recent discovery of this case has led health officials in a new direction as it relates to asymptomatic cases.
Dr.Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services: “As is right now the Epi team is actually reviewing because you know you don’t want to miss any other potential cases out there so the Epi team is reviewing any persons who are – if you are having a higher mortality rate when you compare it with other years or if there is any unusual amount of cardiac related deaths or cardioembolic strokes to see if there is any potential cases out there that the system may be missing. I mean it doesn’t seem to e that we have an unusual higher mortality than other years but we’re going to go back and review that particular data.”
Total deaths related to Covid-19 now stands at 16 in Belize.