Coronavirus: Wife of Bangladeshi worker still in ICU gives birth to baby boy

The baby arrived on March 30, and the Migrant Workers' Centre said that both mother and child are healthy and fine. PHOTO: ITSRAININGRAINCOATS/FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - He is the father of a baby boy but the 39-year-old construction worker, who was infected with the coronavirus in early February, does not know it yet.

The Bangladeshi, also known as Singapore's Case 42, continues to be sedated and in critical condition since he was first admitted nearly two months ago.

He remains in an intensive care ward because of complications brought on by Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

The worker was cleared of the disease and transferred out of the National Centre for Infectious Disease a few days ago, the Migrant Workers' Centre (MWC) said in a Facebook post on Tuesday (March 31).

The Straits Times understands that he is currently warded at another government hospital.

The Bangladesh High Commission had earlier said that the worker suffered from respiratory and kidney problems, and pneumonia before he was infected with the virus.

Said the MWC in the post: "His condition remains critical, but we are encouraged by this latest development and continue to ask for everyone's prayers for him."

The baby arrived on Monday afternoon, said the MWC, adding that both mother and child are healthy and fine.

It also said that the wife got to see her husband via a video call a day before giving birth, so she could "seek strength from seeing her beloved before the delivery".

In a separate Facebook post on Tuesday, Ms Dipa Swaminathan, who is the founder of social enterprise for migrant workers. ItsRainingRaincoats, also posted a photo of Case 42's newborn baby boy.

She has been in daily contact with his wife, who lives in central Bangladesh, and had earlier this month organised a donation drive for the couple, collecting items such as new clothes, diapers and milk bottles for them.

She said the mother and baby were doing well after the cesarean section birth and that the mother had given her permission to post the photo and ask for prayers for the baby.

"Please join us to seek blessings for this little boy and pray that he meets his father soon happy and healthy," she wrote.

Ms Dipa told The Straits Times that the baby will be named only after seven days, in line with a family custom.

In an interview with The Straits Times last month, the wife, who declined to be identified, said she had last seen her husband in June last year.

They have been married for two years and the baby is their first child.

Her husband, who has been working in Singapore for close to a decade, was the first of five Bangladeshi work-pass holders linked to a cluster of infections in a Seletar work site. The four other workers have been discharged.

The Ministry of Health had earlier said Case 42's symptoms surfaced on Feb 1. He went to a general practitioner clinic on Feb 3 and to Changi General Hospital on Feb 5.

He was admitted to the intensive care unit at Changi General Hospital after a follow-up appointment at Bedok Polyclinic on Feb 7.

When contacted on Tuesday, a spokesman for the worker's employer Yi-Ke Innovations said it was planning to donate an additional S$1,800 to the family to help with expenses.

Last month, the company, along with the MWC and Mini-Environment Services, which operates the dormitory where he stayed, sent a $10,000 donation via telegraphic bank transfer to the family in Bangladesh.

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