New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: In the world's first case of coronavirus transmission from mother to her unborn baby, a 24-year-old woman, who had contracted the virus but was cured of it before her delivery, has given birth to a COVID-19 positive baby at Delhi's RML hospital. The reports of the infant came on Thursday. Mother of the infant, who had earlier tested positive for the infection recovered from Covid-19 recently before the delivery.

According to reports, Doctors at the RML hospital said that it was the world’s first case of the transmission of COVID-19 from the mother to her child when the baby is still in the womb.

The 24-years-old mother, a resident of Nangloi, had first tested positive on June 11 for the virus. Her reports came positive again for the second time when she was tested on June 25. But later on July 7, she was tested for the third time when doctors conducted the RTPCR examination, her reports came negative. The woman was admitted to RML Hospital last month.

“The baby was delivered on July 8 around 8.50 pm. It was a normal delivery. After six hours, the newborn was tested via RT-PCR, and the next day, the report came positive. The baby is doing fine and has not shown any symptoms. Another test will be conducted on the newborn after 48 hours,” Dr. Rahul Choudhary, an assistant professor at the department of neonatology, RML Hospital, said as quoted by the New Indian Express.

He further stated that there was no scope of any other external exposure from where the infant could have got infected. “The baby, after the birth, was immediately shifted to the National Injury Surveillance, NISC. There was no contact even with the mother. It is most likely that the baby got infected when the mother was in her third trimester via the placenta,” Dr. Chaudhary added. 

An assistant professor of the hospital’s department of microbiology, Doctor Kirti, said coronavirus is present in the baby with high viral load.

However, according to the study published in an editorial in the American Journal of Perinatology in June, scientists said that the spread of Sars-Cov-2 from a mother to foetus had not been well-established.

‘What WHO says about Covid-19 transmission from mother to her unborn baby’

The world health Organisation in its research claims that there is not enough evidence to conclude that the transmission of coronavirus from the mother to her baby during pregnancy or delivery is possible or not. To date, the active virus has not been found in samples of amniotic fluid or breastmilk. In its statement, WHO also says that based on the limited data, at present there is no evidence that pregnant women are at higher risk of severe illness than the general population.

‘Mother to the newborn possibility of coronavirus, Says ICMR’

Contrary to the statement by the WHO, the Indian Council of Medical Research said that there can be a possibility of transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19) from a pregnant mother to the newborn. In a report published by the Economic Times, The country's top medical research body said that the available scientific evidence suggests that transmission of the virus can happen to a baby before the birth, while it is in the mother's womb, or during delivery from an infected pregnant mother.

"It is unknown whether newborns with COVID-19 are at increased risk for severe complications. Transmission after birth via contact with infectious respiratory secretions is a concern. Facilities should consider temporarily separating (e.g. separate rooms) the mother who have confirmed COVID-19 from the baby until the mother's transmission-based precautions are discontinued," said ICMR in its statement.

Posted By: Simran Babbar