The family of a 13-year-old boy who has passed away after testing positive for COVID-19 say they have been left ‘beyond devastated’ by his death.
Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab, from Brixton, south London, has become the UK’s youngest coronavirus victim, the Mirror reports.
The teenager, who had no underlying health conditions, died at Kings College Hospital yesterday morning after being put into an induced coma.
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In a statement, the Mohamed family said: “Ismail started showing symptoms and had difficulties breathing and was admitted to Kings College Hospital.
“He was put on a ventilator and then put into an induced coma but sadly died yesterday morning. To our knowledge he had no underlying health conditions. We are beyond devastated.”
A King’s College Hospital spokesperson later confirmed the boy’s death, saying: “Sadly, a 13-year old boy who tested positive for COVID-19 has passed away, and our thoughts and condolences are with the family at this time.
“The death has been referred to the Coroner and no further comment will be made.”
A message on the GoFundMe page set up to help pay for the teenager’s funeral costs said he had no underlying health conditions.
The page states: “It is with great sadness to announce that the younger brother of one of our teachers at Madinah College has sadly passed away this morning (Monday 30th March 2020) due to being infected with Covid 19.
“Ismael was only 13 years old without any pre-existing health conditions and sadly he died without any family members close by due to the highly infectious nature of Covid 19.
“We at Madinah College would like to appeal to our brothers and sisters to donate generously to help raise £4000 for the funeral costs and to support the family.
“May Allah grant the family patience through this difficult time and make it a means of drawing closer to Him.”
The GoFundMe page has already raised more than £8,300, despite a target of just £4,000.
Dr Nathalie MacDermott, NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer, King’s College London, said: “It is very sad to hear of the death of a 13-year-old infected with COVID-19.
“While we know it is much less likely for children to suffer severe COVID-19 infection than older adults, this case highlights the importance of us all taking the precautions we can to reduce the spread of infection in the UK and worldwide.
“While it is reported this boy did not have any underlying conditions and was thought to be otherwise healthy, it is important that a coroner assesses whether a post-mortem is necessary to further understand the exact cause of death.
“While chronic underlying medical conditions are known to result in worse outcomes in COVID-19 infection, we have heard of cases of younger individuals with no known medical problems succumbing to the disease.”
The tragedy comes as the number of UK coronavirus deaths rose to 1,808 today.
Yesterday the figure stood at 1,415 and the increase of 393 in the last 24 hours is more than double the increase of 180 across the previous day.
A further 367 patients have died in England, Public Health England confirmed. This takes the total for England alone to 1,651.
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