A woman who had remained in isolation though most of her pregnancy has died after friends organised a surprise baby shower for her, without realising one of the guests was carrying Covid-19.
Camila Graciano had taken great care to avoid the deadly outbreak that has claimed some 117,000 lives in her native Brazil.
But in the eighth month of her pregnancy, colleagues at the school where she worked decided to cheer the 31-year-old up by throwing a baby shower at her home in Anapolis, in the central Brazilian state of Goias.
One of Camila’s friends was infected with coronavirus when she attended the party but hadn’t suffered any symptoms.
But, said Camila’s brother, Daniel Helio Ambrosio: “Soon afterwards [the friend] got really bad and let the others who were there know. Unfortunately, my sister was one of those infected.”
Three days after the party, Camila was rushed to hospital. There were problems finding a bed for her because so many of Brazil’s hospitals are close to breaking point.
Daniel said: “They were thinking about taking her to [the nearby cities of] Goiania or Brasilia. Thanks be to God we have many friends who we mobilised in order to get an ICU bed for Camila, and finally we got one in the Santa Casa [Hospital].”
Camila was admitted into a maternity ward for high-risk pregnancies which has beds specifically set aside for women with COVID last Wednesday.
The birth had to be induced in an effort to save the baby. The tot was was born premature but has been faring well.
The brother said: ”Thank God my niece is showing good signs, she’s breathing alone in the incubator, and doesn’t need oxygen.”
Despite the severity of Ms Graciano’s condition, the family had high hopes that she would recover, and she was even showing signs of significant improvement.
Mr Ambrosio noted: “Right after giving birth, she showed some major improvement. Even the doctors said: ‘Look, have faith, because her lungs are improving, her heart rate is improving, her blood pressure is improving…”
On Friday though, Camila’s condition started to deteriorate and she died the following day.
Her brother said: “On Friday she started to get worse, the virus had mutated very strongly, and she didn’t stand a chance.”
According to the latest figures from the Johns Hopkins University, Brazil has suffered 3,669,995 cases of COVID-19 with 116,580 related deaths.